Valent BioSciences Corporation officials broke ground on their $146 million, 130,000-square-foot, biorational manufacturing facility in Osage, Iowa
Biorationals are naturally occurring and chemically derived pesticides and plant growth regulators used in agriculture, public health, and forestry worldwide.
Mike Donaldson, Valent BioSciences President and CEO, said "highly effective and efficient tools for agriculture are an important part of our future, and this new facility will help us to meet the needs of a growing population. This is the largest and most important investment ever made, not only by our company, but also for the biorational products industry as a whole.
Scheduled for completion in 2014, the new facility will be the first-ever designed and dedicated entirely to the manufacturing of biorationals. When complete, production will include microbial products as well as plant growth regulators and other biorationals.
Based in Libertyville, Illinois, VBS is owned by Sumitomo Chemical Company of Chou-ku, Japan. This investment, which will initially create 89 full-time jobs in Osage, represents one of the largest Japanese business investments in Iowa. It is also expected to create about 500 construction jobs.
"Valent BioSciences investment in Iowa will provide quality jobs for the people of North Central Iowa. This investment demonstrates the confidence businesses have in Iowa as we build on a sound fiscal foundation, while reducing the tax and regulatory burden on business," said Gov. Terry Branstad. "This is precisely why I continue to urge the Legislature to take action and reduce the commercial property tax and the corporate income tax to allow us to continue this momentum in building Iowa's economy."
"Valent BioSciences Corporation's investment is critically important for this community," said Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds. In addition the Department of Economic Development will provide $500,000 for upgrades to the Osage waste water system."