Greater Omaha Packing Co. Foundation Supports Northeast Ag Project
A 100-year-old, family-owned meatpacking business is making an investment in the future of agriculture with a donation to the Northeast Community College capital campaign to construct new ag facilities on the Norfolk campus.
The Greater Omaha Packing Foundation has pledged $50,000 toward the Nexus campaign at Northeast. Henry Davis, the third generation of family ownership at Greater Omaha Packing Co., said, “I am especially interested in supporting the investment in agricultural education as a way of offering more opportunities to the coming generations of farmers and feeders.”
Greater Omaha has been in the beef business since 1920, when it was founded by Henry Davis’s grandfather, Herman Cohen. Cohen’s son-in-law, Pennie Davis, joined as a partner in 1945, and later became president. His son, the current president, Henry Davis, joined the company in 1973.
Greater Omaha Packing Co. now has more than 1,300 employees. The company ships beef across the United States and to over 70 other countries.
Given its volume of production and sourcing of cattle from feeders and farmers in Nebraska and Iowa, Davis said the company is able to provide a consistent supply of fresh, high quality beef to its customers.
Dr. Tracy Kruse, associate vice president of development and external affairs at Northeast and executive director of the Northeast Foundation, shared her appreciation for the investment from Greater Omaha Packing Foundation. “This is an Omaha company with strong ties to northeast Nebraska agriculture,” she said. “Their support of the Nexus project shows their commitment to the future of the beef industry in this area and across the state.”
A new feedlot and large animal handling building are included in the ag facilities currently under construction on the Acklie Family College Farm at Northeast. The initial phase of the Nexus project also includes a farm operations building and a state-of-the-art veterinary technology clinic and classroom building. Construction began in April and the buildings should be ready for students in the fall of 2021.
The funding for the agriculture facilities will come from the College’s commitment of $10 million, as well as external fundraising to fill the gap. With a total project cost of $22.3 million, the College has raised enough funds to begin construction; however, fundraising for the Nexus campaign will continue, as more is needed for equipment, technology and furnishings.
In August 2019, the Acklie Charitable Foundation (ACF) announced a $5 million lead gift to the Nexus project. ACF was founded by the late Duane Acklie and Phyllis Acklie, both Madison County natives and graduates of Norfolk Junior College, a predecessor institution of Northeast Community College.
For more information on the Nexus Campaign, contact Kruse at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call (402) 844-7056. Online donations may be made through agwaternexus.com. Checks may also be mailed to Nexus Campaign, Northeast Community College Foundation, P.O. Box 469, Norfolk, NE 68702-0469.
Photo: Greater Omaha Packing Co, located at 3001 L Street in Omaha.