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Oregon Governor visits Lamb Weston - Hermiston expansion

Oregon Governor visits Lamb Weston - Hermiston expansion

Lamb Weston Hermiston welcomed the Oregon Governor Kate Brown, who got a look at the site where workers are busy constructing the $250 million expansion of the existing french fry factory.
She presented a $500,000 check that will be used for infrastructure and workforce development and training.

April 29, 2018
Lamb Weston Hermiston welcomed the Oregon Governor Kate Brown, who got a look at the site where workers are busy constructing the $250 million expansion of the existing french fry factory.

Brown presented representatives of the company with a check for $500,000, an award from the state’s strategic reserve fund. The money will go toward infrastructure, as well as workforce development and training, said Lamb Weston Director of Communications Shelby Stoolman.

Located on Westland Road in Hermiston, the new factory will open in spring 2019 and is expected to create 170 new jobs. Stoolman said the nearby Boardman plant employs about 400.

Stoolman said they plan to recruit in waves. They have already hired some people, including a few bilingual recruiters, to help with training and development.

Brian Jackson, Lamb Weston’s project manager for the new facility, said construction started in February 2018, and the factory will be similar to the existing one but with the newer technology for processing potatoes. Stoolman said the new facility will produce 300 million pounds of french fries per year.

The company was the first recipient of Hermiston’s long-term rural enterprise zone agreement, and was given a 15-year tax break. Instead of property taxes, the company will pay $1 million per year, to be split evenly between the city of Hermiston and Umatilla County. That $15 million is about 42 percent of what the company would have paid without the agreement.

Brown said this was her second visit to a Lamb Weston facility, and that she was excited by the development in Eastern Oregon.

Kate Brown, Governor of Oregon:

“We’re all seeing the potential in potatoes.”
Brown stressed the importance of giving students the opportunity to graduate high school with skills that they can use in the workforce, if they choose to go that route.

Kate Brown:

“The same challenges I’m hearing from employers in the valley, central and southern Oregon are the same ones I’m hearing here.”

“They’re looking for a skilled, quality workforce.”
Companies in this Article
Lamb Weston - Hermiston is one of the French Fry Production locations of Lamb Weston in Oregon, United States
Lamb Weston Holdings Inc (NYSE:LW) is the largest potato company in North America with annual sales of approximately $2 billion. Lamb Weston manufactures french fries, potato specialties and dehydrated potato products.