Pork and poultry processor Olymel will build a ham deboning table at the factory, a project requiring extensive redevelopment work of its butchery and chilled food storage room.
Ham deboning is a new operation for the Vallée-Jonction facility. It comes several months after Olymel slashed 340 deboning jobs at its Saint Hyacinth factory after announcing it would move this work to its other factories to improve efficiency.
The renovation of the Vallée-Jonction site, which predominantly produces export meat for Japan, is being done to ensure the business has enough capacity to meet rising demand.
“This investment will allow the Vallée-Jonction facility to continue serving its markets more efficiently,” said Olymel’s CEO Réjean Nadeau.
“This change is also an integral part of the reorganisation of Olymel’s fresh pork sector in Quebec with a view to optimising performance and improving efficiency. The addition of 160 new jobs over and above the current workforce will bring the number of employees at our facility in Vallée-Jonction to nearly 1,200, which boosts the economic impact of our operations in the Beauce and the greater Quebec City region,” added Nadeau.
Renovation work at the Vallée-Jonction facility is expected to start in November 2016. Construction will carry on until the end of February 2017. Volume output will not be impacted by the four-month project.
As a result of the extra manpower Olymel will need to produce extra fresh pork for the Japanese market and the business has launched a “major recruitment campaign”. Across greater Quebec City, local newspaper and radio adverts will highlight the new jobs. Aside from the obvious fact of promoting jobs, Olymel also wants to inform interested applicants that its processing standards are “among the best” in the industry. This comes in the wake of a Canadian Meat Council report that revealed the country’s meat factories are suffering from a chronic workforce deficit.
Separately, in September, Olymel launched a CA$11m investment package at its Saint-Henri-de-Lévis pork plant, leading to the creation of 30 new jobs. It means the business has announced the creation of 190 jobs in the last fortnight.