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Letter to the Editor

 

Ben Frederick, Mayor of Owosso

1:36 pm

Independent Editor,
I would like to take an opportunity to respond to the recent letter by McClear and Koski in regard to their concerns about the proposed agribusiness development in the city of Owosso. In doing so, I hope to clarify what the potential project does and does not entail.
First, it is important to note that rather than a grain elevator, this facility will be an animal feed mill, which has food safety and sanitation programs similar to the human food industry.
The noise and dust of the drying process will not be a factor as there will not be drying on site. The ingredients will arrive in Owosso in enclosed cars which will be brought directly into the facility. This means that, from start to finish, the entire process will be enclosed and entail filtration protocols and safety measures.
It is not unusual for a feed processing site to be within a city’s borders. In this case, the large acreage lot (approximately 20 acres) forms a natural buffer which has already allowed for the successful operation of sanding/honing grain manufacturer Detroit Abrasives for decades without excessive disturbance to the surrounding area. Truck traffic will use the existing Sonoco service drive just off M-21 without encroachment on residential areas.
The development of this facility will bring up to 14 jobs on site initially and will support other jobs as truckers and technicians service the facility. The city has also received the good news that Sonoco, which happens to also be our largest industrial water user, is strongly considering an expansion given the expected road and water improvements that the project will fund within the overall Brownfield cleanup site. The prospect of further growth within the agribusiness sector that will attract potential suppliers and other economic activity region wide is exciting as well.
Overall, this project represents a safe, secure and low impact operation on an existing industrial site which returns long vacant property to the tax rolls and supports further jobs and economic activity in our city.

Ben Frederick, Mayor of Owosso

Ben Frederick, Mayor of Owosso was last modified: April 13th, 2016 by Karen Elford