LEWISTOWN — Near the Mifflin County Industrial Development Corporation plaza, next to the Pennelec substation, a new agricultural business has taken root in Granville Township. Double S Liquid Feed Services recently opened a new plant. A leading manufacturer and supplier of cane molasses, vegetable oils, beet molasses, fish oil and mineral oil products, Double S recently completed renovation of a 6,000 square-foot former machine shop, updating the rail system, adding 25 storage tanks and creating separate medicated and non-medicated mixers.
President and CEO Greg Shepard said settling on this location was a combination of the correct amount of square footage, good rail access and a central location to serve the eastern portion of their market area. “We have been in business for twenty-nine years and make liquid products for the further manufacture of livestock, equine and specialty feeds. Our goal is to serve and grow our customer base in the northeast. This plant in Lewistown is part of a multiple step program to pursue our growth goals and secure the future for our employees and their families,” he said. “The addition of this Pennsylvania facility allows Double S to gain stronger access to eastern markets,” Shepard said. “We made significant investments in new equipment and property, continuing to grow the company’s product and service offerings and expanding its geographic footprint.” Along with separate medicated and non-medicated feeds, Double S will also make calcium-suspended feeds at the new plant. Additionally, the facility has the unique ability to run railcars inside, making unloading a more reliable and efficient process. “This site will play an important role in our future production and give us the flexibility and capacity to meet the needs of our rapidly growing product portfolio and service offerings,” he said. Double S has five other plant locations, including one at Double S headquarters in Danville, Ill.
MCIDC President Rob Postal said they started to work with the Company in May, 2014 and there was the usual attempt to secure funds from the State, at least for the required rail improvements; however, that idea fizzled for various reasons. Postal said after rethinking the financing strategy and negotiations with the owner, the company decided to privately finance all its needs, including the rehabilitation of the rail system on its property, but not the Roundhouse Road crossing from the rail yards. “To address this, we acknowledge the cooperative approach by the SEDA COG Rail Authority, Juniata Valley Rail Road, and Granville Twp that led to the installation of the new Roundhouse Road rail crossing that had given Double S the confidence to invest on its site,” Postal said. Postal said he expects eight to 10 jobs will be created byt the company and three rail cars a week will be routed through the facility. Postal added the former owner, Freedom Technologies, had relocated as a tenant to the former Junction Fire Building owned now by Nittany Paper.
By Kiernan M. Schalk, Sentinel reporter
Reprinted with permission from The Sentinel