Councillors are expected to back plans for a new £17 million abattoir outside Inverurie next week.
The new Scotbeef meat processing facility is a joint venture between ANM Group and Scotland’s largest meat processing company, JW Galloway.
It would take shape at the expanded Thainstone Business Park and has the strong backing of NFU Scotland.
The union has written to Aberdeenshire councillors urging them to back the proposals, describing them as a “huge opportunity” for the region.
In their letter to councillors, NFU Scotland bosses points out that cattle production and beef processing in the north east has a “clear downstream impact”, supporting hundreds of allied businesses such as hauliers, animal feed producers, agricultural suppliers, construction and much more, “creating much needed employment and economic activity in many north east communities”.
In signing the letter, Charlie Adam, a beef producer at Leochel-Cushnie, near Alford, said: “I firmly believe that the proposals to develop at this site are critical to the profitability and sustainability of cattle production, both in the North East and in Scotland more generally.
“In a very competitive food market, in which margins are tight, it’s essential that firms invest in infrastructure to meet the needs of the market and to continue to support the jobs and rural economy to which they are inextricably linked. “
The joint venture recently received an unexpected £4 million boost from the Scottish Government – one of the largest food processing, marketing and cooperation grants ever to have been awarded.
Scotbeef managing director Robbie Galloway hopes to create up to 30 jobs and double weekly capacity once the new plant opens.
Councillors on the Garioch area committee have been urged to grant approval for the plans by planning officials.
A decision will be taken at Tuesday’s meeting.
If approved, the new facility is expected to be completed next summer and would replace the existing abattoir in Inverurie’s North Street.