Fairfield chicken processor Koch Foods plans additional construction

Credit: Nick Graham

Credit: Nick Graham

Koch Foods has $100 million plan that would add 100 new jobs, Butler County official says as port authority agrees to help

A Koch Foods plan to tear down one building and replace it with a new one is part of a $100 million proposal that will create 100 new jobs, according to a Butler County official.

Just when Koch Foods will demolish the old Liberty Mutual insurance building on Seward Road with the assistance of the Butler County Port Authority is not yet known.

Koch Foods General Manager Brian Reisen said there’s “nothing to report yet.”

Last week, the Butler County Port Authority agreed through a resolution to assist Koch Foods in the demolition of the former insurance building and the construction of a 450,000-square-foot cold storage and distribution facility that would support the chicken processor’s facility a little more than a mile north on Port Union Road.

The county Port Authority approved a development agreement with Koch Foods.

Butler County Development Director David Fehr said the Koch Foods demolition and planned new facility “represents an investment of more than $100 million” as they intend “to create 100 jobs with an average pay of more than $60,000 a year.”

Koch Foods purchased the building last year for $8.4 million, and the company also purchased an adjacent property for $1.6 million, according to the Butler County Auditor’s Office.

The purchases were made as Koch Foods was still constructing an expansion of its manufacturing and processing facility at 4100 Port Union Road. The new 402,140-square-foot building sits on 18 acres behind Koch Foods’ 45-acre main campus, representing a $220 million investment. Most of the money, about $140 million, was spent on the building, with the balance of that investment going toward new machinery and equipment.

That expansion created hundreds of new jobs, as some had been hired when the building opened earlier this year, and additional jobs will be filled throughout the year, Reisen previously told the Journal-News.

Koch Foods purchased the former Liberty Mutual insurance building from Ambrose Property Group, an Indiana-based developer that’s behind the Fairfield Commerce Park on the adjacent 137 acres on Seward Road.

Because Ambrose Property Group no longer owns the former insurance company building, Fairfield City Council needed to amend its Community Reinvestment Agreement. The developer has constructed three industrial buildings on the adjacent land, and a fourth industrial building is nearing completion, Fairfield Economic Development Manager Nathaniel Kaelin said.

Kaelin said on Monday all four buildings had been fully leased, and the tenants on the yet-to-be-finished building will move in once construction is completed.

In September 2022, Fairfield City Council approved a second CRA with Ambrose Property Group after the company purchased 27 acres across the street from Fairfield Commerce Center. The company is planning a 200,000-plus-square-foot speculative industrial building, the company’s fifth on Seward Road.

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