The countdown: Top 10 local news stories of 2013

Published 6:50am Wednesday, January 1, 2014

(7) A record year for Hormel: $526 million in profit; $17 million in bonuses for workers; and a $25-million expansion of its odor elimination facility

ah.01.26While the acquisition of Skippy grabbed the biggest headlines for Hormel Foods Corp., the Austin-based company also had a record-setting fiscal year and announced $25 million in renovations to its odor elimination facility.

Hormel reported in November $526.2 million in profit and $8.75 billion in total sales, both all-time bests. Profit, which was up for the fifth-consecutive year, increased 5 percent from $500.1 million last year. The 2013 total was almost double 2008’s profit, when the company reported $285.5 million.

Sales were up 6 percent from $8.23 billion in 2012, or an increase of about $500 million.

All that success trickled down to employees, as Hormel gave a record $17 million in profit sharing bonuses to workers, and an additional $300 bonus to full-time workers and $150 to part-time employees.

The company also moved forward in February with the multi-million renovations to its inedible waste treatment plant — which will process excess meat and other hog parts not used in food manufacturing — on the east side of the property.

This new plant will contain regenerative thermal oxidizers, a processor of sorts, which heats hazardous or volatile fumes, converting it to water and carbon dioxide. The oxidizers should eliminate much of the smell from the treatment plant, and is expected to reduce some of the main plant’s odor emissions, as well.

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