MT. VERNON, INDIANA, U.S. — Cargill announced on Dec. 29 that it is significantly upgrading its Mt. Vernon, Indiana, U.S., grain operations through construction of four new grain storage bins totaling 3.4 million bushels of storage capacity.

Cargill is also adding a fifth truck receiving pit to complement the facility's existing rail and truck unload capabilities. In addition, the company is installing new, automated control systems to monitor grain temperatures in all of the facility's grain storage areas. The total investment will increase Cargill's grain storage capacity by more than 50% and grain unloading capacity by an additional 20%.

Construction will begin in January and is scheduled for completion in November 2011. Cargill expects to hire 75 local Indiana contract workers over the 10-month span of the project.

"We are pleased to invest in these upgrades, as they will directly benefit our producer customers, while giving a boost to the local economy," said Brett Ridge, facility manager for Cargill AgHorizons' Mt. Vernon elevator. "The additional grain storage capacity and automated control systems will advance our efforts in ensuring high-quality grain, and the truck receiving pit will allow for greater service and flexibility for our customers by providing faster grain unloading capabilities. This is a considerable investment that reflects our commitment to this region and to helping our producer customers prosper."

Cargill has 20 dedicated employees at its Mt. Vernon grain elevator helping farmers with grain handling, crop insurance, and grain marketing needs. In the region, Cargill operates grain elevators year-round in Evansville, Princeton and Vincennes, Indiana, U.S., and it has a grain put-through agreement with the Wheeler Creek Grain facility in McLeansboro, Illinois, U.S.