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CJ Selects Gray to Design and Build New Manufacturing Facility

CJ Bio America selected Gray to design and build their first U.S. lysine production facility at the North Central Ag Industrial Park in Fort Dodge, Iowa. The facility will create about 170 new jobs in Central Iowa by 2014. The $323 million plant will utilize corn starch from the adjacent Cargill facility and refine it into amino acids to be used in livestock feed. The CJ Bio America plant is the first of what local leaders hope will be many companies that will set up shop in the Ag Industrial Park to use byproducts from the Cargill plant.

CJ CheilJedang Corp., based in South Korea, was established in 1953 as the Cheil Sugar Co. Ltd. At the time, it was a sugar production company that was part of Samsung Corp. The company expanded into flour milling in 1958. In 1963, it began producing the flavor enhancer monosodium glutamate. Production of seasoning called mipoong followed in 1964. In the early 1990s, the company separated from Samsung. It now works in four business areas: food and food services, bio pharma, entertainment media and home shopping. In the United States, the company does business as CJ America, with headquarters in Downers Grove, Ill.

CJ broke ground on the new lysine production facility on May 14, 2012. Gray, ranked 4th among the U.S. Top Green Contractors in Manufacturing Plant Construction, is providing architecture, engineering and construction services for this project. Construction is underway at the 65-acre site and the facility is expected to open in early 2014.

Gray, a nationally ranked engineering, design and construction company, currently has several large projects, mostly located across the South, that are underway or recently completed including a Michelin Earthmover tire manufacturing plant in Starr, S.C.; a Caterpillar Inc. manufacturing facility in Winston-Salem, North Carolina; a Caterpillar Inc. manufacturing facility near Athens, Ga.; a Siemens gas turbine plant in Charlotte, North Carolina; a Whirlpool plant in Cleveland, Tenn.; and multiple projects for Austal USA in Mobile, Alabama.

If you are interested in additional CJ Bio America project information or have manufacturing plant construction needs, please contact Phil Seale, Senior Vice President, Manufacturing Market at

    September 18, 2012

    Some opinions expressed in this article may be those of a contributing author and not necessarily Gray.

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