Pioneer "breaks ground" for new distribution center

Friday, May 25, 2012
Gary Hamer, regional account manager for Pioneer Hi-Bred, accepted a vase crafted at Bongerfief Studios in Spencer, from Iowa Lakes Corridor Development Corporation president and CEO Kathy Evert as a gift from the region to Pioneer for its decision to establish a 200,000 square foot facility - the first company to locate in Spencer's Green Industrial Park. Spencer Mayor Reynold Peterson looks on during the presentation. (Photo by Randy M. Cauthron)

Pioneer's groundbreaking, on its new 200,000 square foot facility in Spencer's Green Industrial Park went forward minus the actual breaking of the ground. Dirts been moving at the site for quite some time, but rainy weather and muddy conditions at the site - east of Spencer - forced the ceremonial shoveling of dirt to be moved to the south patio at Spencer Community Theatre.

There were plenty of dignitaries, shovels and helmets, but no actual ground moved.

Regardless of the location change, community and business leaders from Spencer and the Iowa Great Lakes Corridor region celebrated the new Pioneer regional distribution center which is slated for completion and occupancy in October.

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey called Thursday's groundbreaking by Pioneer an investment in the future. (Photo by Randy M. Cauthron)

"Welcome to the newest production at Spencer Community Theatre," Kathy Evert, president and chief executive officer of the Iowa Lakes Corridor Development Corporation, said to the audience gathered on the SCT patio. "I'm never going to complain about rain where we're talking about a Pioneer project. ... On behalf of all of here today, thank you for your commitment and investment in our community."

Gary Hamer, regional account manager with Pioneer, credited the continued growth and demand in the ag industry for the need for the Spencer facility.

"It will play a vital role in how we do business up here in Iowa," Hamer said. "Spencer is the center of northwest Iowa. It's centrally located to our production plants. It's the perfect location."

"We are proud that Pioneer selected Spencer and the Iowa Lakes Corridor region for this new distribution center," Spencer Mayor Reynold Peterson said. "Pioneer is a great company and we thank them for their faith in our community and making this investment here."

"We are proud of the continued demand for our top performance products and services, and look forward to a larger presence in the Spencer community," Todd Frazier, Pioneer business director for Iowa and Missouri, said.

The Pioneer facility is the second building to be constructed in the Green Industrial Center. About 140 acres remain for other development as well as 70 acres in the Spencer Tech Park South on the west side of Spencer.

"All of this is an effort to help feed our growing populations," Hamer said. "Thank you for helping us provide for our customers and farmers."

This warehouse and distribution center announcement is the newest in several Pioneer expansion projects around the state including a new corn research center in Orange City, a new research facility in Johnston and an expanded corn research facility in Dallas Center.

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey thanked Pioneer for all of the investments it has been making in the state of Iowa.

"It's a great legacy," Northey said, noting that Thursday's groundbreaking is "an investment for the future."

The secretary of agriculture noted there are 25 states in the country that don't plant a million acres in crops. This new distribution facility will handle more than that. Northey added that internationally, Iowa would be ranked as the fifth largest country in the world when it comes to corn production."

"This project involved many local partners working together to attract this kind of investment and this celebration today," Evert said.

A large group gathered on the patio at Spencer Community Theater to take part in the ceremonial ground breaking event for Pioneer Hy-Bred's new distribution center being constructed in west Spencer. (Photo by Randy M. Cauthron)

"Lot's of people working together put this together in a short amount of time. That's how we get things done in Spencer. All of us working together," Steve Pick, general manager with Spencer Municipal Utilities, said.

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