Premium Iowa Pork Acquires Bankrupt Minnesota Plant for $14 Million

Premium Iowa Pork has successfully completed the acquisition of a Minnesota pork processing plant for $14 million. The plant, previously owned by HyLife Foods Windom, ceased operations and filed for bankruptcy, resulting in the displacement of approximately 1,000 workers, many of whom were foreign employees.

HyLife Foods Windom cited COVID-19-related disruptions, along with low pork prices and other challenges, as the reasons for their two years of operating losses, leading to their bankruptcy filing in April. As part of the bankruptcy proceedings, the plant was put up for auction, and Premium Iowa Pork emerged as the highest bidder.

The family-owned Iowa company sees the Windom plant as a complementary addition to its existing processing facilities in Hospers, Iowa, and Luverne, Minnesota. With its headquarters located in Hospers, approximately 90 miles away from Windom, and Luverne situated about 60 miles away, the acquisition strengthens Premium Iowa Pork’s regional presence.

While the exact timeline for reopening the plant remains uncertain, Premium Iowa Pork intends to conduct a comprehensive review of the facility. The company, known for providing private-label, antibiotic-free pork to grocery stores nationwide since 2005, employs around 900 individuals from Iowa, Minnesota, and South Dakota.

Investigations into wage and hour violations by HyLife Foods are ongoing. The Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry alerted the U.S. Department of Homeland Security about potential violations between May 8, 2021, and the present. The department requests prosecutorial discretion and employment authorization documents for affected workers.