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Food giant ConAgra plans huge center north of Indianapolis

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ConAgra Foods Inc. is expanding logistics operations in central Indiana by moving a distribution center in Lebanon to a new and bigger facility it plans to build in nearby Frankfort.

Omaha, Neb.-based ConAgra said it would build the 1.6 million-square-foot facility on a 288-acre site in Frankfort, the company said Tuesday afternoon.

The company plans to move 150 workers from Lebanon to the new center and hire an additional 76 employees by 2015. Frankfort is about 15 miles north of Lebanon, in Clinton County.

The Indiana Economic Development Corp. offered ConAgra up to $750,000 in conditional tax credits based on the company's job-creation plans. Frankfort and Clinton County approved additional incentives and are considering a 20-year tax increment financing plan.

A summer groundbreaking is expected at a site north of the Frankfort Industrial Park that leaves room for future expansion.

“Our industrial park already is home to two other food manufacturers, including Archer Daniels Midland and Frito-Lay,” Frankfort Mayor Chris McBarnes said in a prepared statement. “With the addition of ConAgra Foods on a multi-acre site, Frankfort is beginning to define itself as the city that feeds the state that feeds the world.”

ConAgra is one of North America’s largest packaged food companies with branded and private branded food found in 99 percent of America’s households, including Banquet, Chef Boyardee, Healthy Choice, Hebrew National, Hunt’s, Marie Callender’s, Orville Redenbacher’s, Peter Pan, Slim Jim and Snack Pack.

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