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CJ Bio America has positive impact

Company, employees support their community

Most residents of the Fort Dodge area had never heard of CJ CheilJedang Corp. in late 2011 when the South Korea based company announced that it would build its first North American plant in Webster County.

It’s been nearly a decade since the company made that announcement. In that time the company’s North American venture, called CJ Bio America, has made such a huge positive impact that there are now few people who are not aware of it.

The impact of CJ Bio America, which makes amino acids for animal feed and a liquid soil amendment, can be described with numbers. In this case, the numbers are big. Those figures start with a $323 million investment in a new plant at Iowa’s Crossroads of Global Innovation, which opened in 2013.

A few years ago, the company invested about $51 million in the plant. It is now on the verge of investing another $20 million.

About 220 people work at the plant.

As impressive as those figures are, the company and its employees have made an impact that is perhaps a little harder to tabulate in any traditional way, but may be even more meaningful for our community.

That impact has been made by supporting service organizations and special events. It has been made by employees who show up and get things done to benefit the community.

The organizations that have benefited from a little help from the employees of CJ Bio America include the Badger Lake Dragon Boat Festival, the Brushy Creek Area Honor Flight, Bikes for Tykes, The Lord’s Cupboard and Meals on Wheels.

Anyone who plays baseball or softball at Hydro-Electric Park is benefiting from the labor of CJ Bio America employees who have done extensive work on the ballfield there.

It has been estimated that company employees have provided some 20,000 hours of volunteer service since the plant opened.

That kind of dedication to the community has made CJ Bio America and its employees special to Fort Dodge and Webster County.

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