TYRONE - An increase in the production of all-natural bacon has led to some new jobs at the Kunzler and Co, Inc. plant, and the addition of more jobs is likely.
Last week, Kunzler added 13 new employees, including 10 laborers, as a result of the success of the plant's natural bacon production, which uses antibiotic-free, hormone-free pigs, said Dave Grazier, plant manager.
"We are now at 175 employees, and we are looking to add another eight to 10 jobs later this year as a result of the bacon," Grazier said. "Right now, we are producing about 120,000 pounds of natural bacon a week, and that is on top of 250,000 pounds of our own bacon. We are now running two full shifts for the slicing end of it," Grazier said.
Mirror photo by Gary M. Baranec
Rick Burket of Sinking Valley (foreground) works in the bacon packaging department at Kunzler & Co. Inc. in Tyrone on Monday. Kunzler only produces bacon in the Tyrone facility.
The Tyrone plant is the only Kunzler facility that makes bacon.
"Up until last year, we made bacon produced in the traditional manner with sugar and preservatives. Natural bacon is all natural using sea salt and raw sugar. We don't use any man-made cures or preservations of any kind," Grazier said.
Officials at Kunzler headquarters in Lancaster are pleased with the growth at the Tyrone plant.
"Increased bacon production is something we are seeing around the world. Bacon is hot, and that benefits us," said Terry Ernest, director of human resources. "We added an additional second shift, and most importantly, we have added jobs. It shows we are growing."