The Pioneer seed corn production facility in Plymouth broke ground in 1988. Production location manager Mark Letzinger said when the plant opened in 1989 it was considered a small operation. But things have changed a lot since then. Letzinger said, “We had about 35 employees, about 40 growers producing seed on about 14,000 acres. We’ve tripled in size since then. We have about 90 full-time employees, we have over 115 growers, and 2013 was our largest crop. We produce over 3 million bushels of seed out of this plant that year.” The Plymouth facility is one of Pioneer’s major production plants, providing seeds to much of the US and Canada.
Governor Mike Pence said Pioneer’s 25 years is a milestone and represents a great partnership between a global company and Indiana’s farmers. “It’s important to point out that while we’re celebrating 25 years at this facility, DuPont Pioneer employs over 600 Hoosiers in 9 locations around the state,” he said. The Governor closed his comments by saying, “It is facilities like this that make Indiana a major agricultural state. DuPont Pioneer is a critical part of an agricultural innovation infrastructure in our state and makes Indiana a center of investment and innovation today and tomorrow.”
When the facility was first constructed, biotechnology was just a theory. Over the past 25 years, DuPont Pioneer has invested millions of dollars into the facility to develop and produce crops with new biotech traits and new specialty crops. Pence said this kind of investment agriculture is one of reasons the Indiana economy continues to grow, “Companies like DuPont Pioneer will continue to make Indiana the center for breakthroughs that will lead to a brighter future for all of agriculture.”
Indiana State Director of Ag Ted McKinney said the event was not only an opportunity to celebrate 25 years in Plymouth, but celebrate the advancements in technology. “Why? Because they’ve helped people’s lives with higher yields, better standability, and better crops. And, I think we’ve just begin to scratch the surface.” McKinney said Indiana has the right climate, the right resources, and the right people to continue to be on the leading edge of innovation in agriculture, “We are just beginning to see the benefits this innovation will bring to humankind from healthier foods to new kinds of food. And Indiana agriculture is right at the forefront of these developments, and we want to stay there.”