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Fertilizer plant to merge 3 Nutrien offices

Posted on July 24, 2021

Local news
Workers have begun construction on the new Nutrien Ag Solutions facility on U.S. 301 between Lucama and Kenly. The company is consolidating its Wilson and Princeton locations.

Drew C. Wilson | Restoration NewsMedia

Workers have begun construction on the new Nutrien Ag Solutions facility on U.S. 301 between Lucama and Kenly. The company is consolidating its Wilson and Princeton locations.

dwilson@wilsontimes.com | 252-265-7818

LUCAMA — Nutrien Ag Solutions is consolidating its Wilson and Princeton locations into a single 12-acre facility in western Wilson County.

“It is definitely looking toward the future,” said Ken Hubbard, a Nutrien Ag Solutions crop consultant who will manage the project. “We are digging in our heels and plan to be here for the long run to service this area, Wilson, Johnston, Nash and Edgecombe counties.”

The company sells agricultural seeds, chemical crop inputs and dry and liquid fertilizer goods.

Hubbard called the multi-million-dollar venture a “state-of-the-art facility” because of its capacity and capability.

Nutrien Ag Solutions currently has facilities at 800 Railroad St. S. and at 2404 Wilco Blvd. in Wilson and at 141 Luby Smith Road near Princeton, just across the Johnston-Wayne county line.

The new site at 8455 U.S. 301 S. has a Lucama address but is closer to Kenly. Hubbard said Nutrien purchased the property in 2020, and Iowa-based general contractor Stueve Construction is building the facility.

“We are just going to be able to service a much larger footprint out of one single location rather than trying to service it all out of multiple locations,” Hubbard said. “We’re really just trying to cement ourselves toward the future of this area of this landscape.”

The site’s chemical and seed building will be about 30,000 square feet, including a roughly 3,000-square-foot office.

Nutrien’s complex will have a bulk chemistry plant and a bulk fertilizer plant with a dry fertilizer shed boasting a 9,000-ton capacity.

“We are putting in a dry fertilizer shed that probably won’t be comparable to any other maybe even in the state as far as its capacity to bring in and output fertilizer goods,” Hubbard said.

The site is located between U.S. 301 and the CSX rail line near N.C. 581.

“We will have a 10-car railroad spur coming off of CSX’s line there that will feed our fertilizer facility,” Hubbard said. “We will have the capacity to either load into our dry shed or straight off a rail onto trucks to transport out to other locations.”

Nutrien estimates its site will have the capacity to bring in 20,000 to 25,000 tons of dry fertilizer products.

“That is probably what we would do in a normal year on the rail,” Hubbard said. “We also bring in a lot on trucks.”

The new location, expected to be operational by March 2022, will employ 22-25 people. Current employees in Wilson and Princeton will be invited to work at the new location.

Hubbard said the company hasn’t determined what will happen to its property on Railroad Street, where a historic 1906 dry fertilizer shed is located adjacent to a railroad spur off the CSX mainline.

The 500-foot-long dry fertilizer shed is constructed from enormous wooden timbers.

“It was quite a feat to be built when it was built,” Hubbard said.

Nutrien used the building to store, blend and ship dry fertilizer products for various crops.

“I know that walking through that, it is amazing to look at the timber, the lumber that was used to build it and how big those beams were and how old that wood is,” said Norman Harrell, director of Wilson’s N.C. Cooperative Extension office, who has visited the building. “That’s quite a sight.”

Harrell said it’s exciting that Nutrien is investing in Wilson County.

“I think it’s a great testament to the importance of agriculture in Wilson County for Nutrien to select this location to make this investment for this new facility,” Harrell said. “This company had a presence in Wilson for an extremely long time.”

Hubbard noted Nutrien’s mergers, acquisitions and name changes. The company has been Nutrien for about four years. It was previously Crop Production Services, and before that, Royster Clark.

“It is something exciting. Once we move in and get it fully operational, I think it will be a sight to see,” Hubbard said.

Nutrien Ag Solutions is headquartered in Loveland, Colorado. Parent company Nutrien is based in Saskatoon, Canada. 

“We are part of the retail arm of Nutrien. Nutrien is the largest fertilizer and ag retail company in the world,” Hubbard said. “We are on five different continents, so we have got a pretty vast footprint across the country and across the world.”

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