Tyson Foods is investing $26 million to expand production at the iconic Wright Brand bacon facility in Vernon, Texas. Scheduled for completion by March of 2021, the expansion is expected to create 32 new jobs, bringing the total employment at the plant to more than 800.
“This project is great news for our plant, our community and our customers,” said Dane Bonfy, manager of the Wright Brand plant. “We love the Vernon community and look forward to growing our team with the additional positions and meeting the growing demand for our products.”
Hiring for these and other positions starts immediately, Bonfy added.
“I am extremely excited about the addition and enhancements to the Wright Brand facility in Vernon, Texas,” said Vernon Mayor Pam Gosline. “Adding jobs is nothing but great news for our community. Tyson Foods is and always has been a vital ingredient to the growth of Vernon, and we are very thankful to them for all they do for our community. Vernon is proud to be the home of Wright Brand Bacon since 1922.”
The bacon category has seen volume growth, up 18% since 2017, with new people entering the category and existing buyers consuming more bacon, most recently due to an increase in at-home meals. Surpassing category growth during this same time period, Wright Brand has increased volume by 29% as more buyers are introduced to the brand. The expansion is expected to satisfy current demand and allow room for additional growth.
“We’re pleased we can continue to build on the proud heritage of this iconic and delicious brand,” said Noelle O’Mara, Group President of Prepared Foods for Tyson Foods. “More importantly, we’ve had a strong presence in Vernon for nearly 100 years as one of the largest employers. It’s an honor to continue that long history by adding new jobs in the local community.”
The Wright Brand is known for its hand trimmed and thick-cut real wood smoked bacon. Flavors have been perfected through a 90-year proprietary curing recipe, featuring favorites including hickory smoked, applewood smoked, double smoke and maple flavored bacon.
Tyson Foods and its family of companies operate 10 food processing plants in Texas, employing more than 12,000 team members and paying more than $480 million in annual wages as of the most recently completed fiscal year. The company also contracts with more than 230 poultry growers and more than 90 cattle suppliers in the state. It is estimated Tyson Foods’ operations have a total annual impact of nearly $3 billion in Texas.