Bushel Boy Farms, Owatonna, Minn., broke ground on a new 50-acre tomato processing facility in Mason City, Iowa. The $35 million investment will increase current production by 50%, and is expected to incur approximately 50 full-time jobs.

Phase 1 of the 3-phase project entails development of a 16.5-acre high-tech greenhouse. The project is scheduled for completion in October 2020, with the first harvest expected in December 2020.

Construction is also currently underway on a 4.5-acre research and development greenhouse that will increase production at its flagship facility and increase the variety of tomato offerings. The construction phase of the project is set for completion in December with production starting in early 2020. Once both projects are complete, Bushel Boy will have 48 acres of greenhouse space, with infrastructure in place for 33 more acres. These projects will provide an enhanced ability to offer a wide variety of locally grown, premium fresh produce to the upper Midwest.

“These expansions will not only allow us to serve our existing customer base, but will [also] provide us the opportunity to seek new business relationships and expand existing partnerships with retailers, wholesalers and foodservice distributors,” says Steve Irland, president. “We are incredibly grateful for the support we have received from the city of Mason City and its government officials, as well as support at the county and state level and with the North Iowa Corridor EDC.”