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MASON CITY — Purina Animal Nutrition of Mason City on Friday showcased a $2.4 million addition that will open next week.

More than 80 Purina employees from other facilities and local customers visited the plant to see how their animal feed is made.

The plant has produced livestock feed in Mason City for 56 years, serving swine, dairy cattle, beef cattle, sheep and poultry farmers. The plant is at 1609 19th St. S.W.

There are 364 products produced at the plant in different forms to service many types of farm operations in North Iowa and Southern Minnesota. Most of the feed is sold to farmer-owned cooperatives within 120 miles of the plant.

The investment will boost production and help the plant better serve the community, plant manager Wesley Fiddelke said.

Purina built a new bulk load-out facility, which includes a truck scale. This addition, which includes 12 finished feed bins, will mean faster loading of pellets, which are fed to growing pigs and dairy calves.

Pellets account for 60 percent of the plant’s production.

“We’ve needed this expansion and new equipment for about 10 years,” Fiddelke said.

Fiddelke, who has worked at the plant since 1997, said this is the biggest expansion he’s seen.

“It’s a blessing, and it’s good for us to better serve our customers,” he said.

Dan Moran, senior director of livestock feed marketing, said it used to take 72 hours to fill a feed hour. Now, Moran said orders will be filled in 48 hours.

The load-out facility will be operational Monday.

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