MIAMI – Celebrating its 40th anniversary, J-M Farms in Miami broke ground on the construction of a new, state-of-the-art facility Wednesday.

What will be the Phase II Tunnel facility will be located north of the current J-M Farms building and will house pasteurization and final compost conditioning operations.

This will aid J-M in meeting the increasing global demand for mushrooms and help ensure that only a top-quality product is being produced for its customers.

“With this being our 40th year in Miami, it’s even more special to announce that we are continuing our investment in the community with this project. We have spent over three years in research and planning, including multiple trips to Europe and Canada, to ensure that we are incorporating the latest design and technology. Our objective is to continue to be one of the leading suppliers of mushrooms in the United States,” said Scott Engelbrecht, J-M Farms vice president of operations.

This new facility has been years in the making and has required a substantial amount of planning by both J-M and local contractor Crossland Construction.

The thoughts shared by company officials during the groundbreaking ceremony included “We’re proud to announce that our vision has finally come to fruition. This new addition will incorporate advanced technology that will be much more energy efficient than the current process and will improve overall crop consistency.

“J-M is committed to improving the Miami economy and this project reflects our ongoing investment in the community. This project is one of the first of many ways J-M plans to continue investment within the Miami community in the upcoming years.”

J-M has been a major employer in Miami for the last 40 years and currently employs more than 500 people from the surrounding area.

The new facility is estimated to cost $10 million and will help uphold J-M’s reputation as the premier mushroom supplier in the southwest, ensuring employment stability and top quality product for years to come.

J-M Farms’ mission is to provide the best quality product to their customers while doing so at the most economical cost. They recognize that their team members are their most valuable asset and place support in the communities they live in and strive to ensure a better way of life.

Virgil Jurgensmeyer, Joe Jurgensmeyer, and Darrell McLain founded J-M Farms, Inc. in the fall of 1979. The company name was originally J&M Farms, Inc., but was changed to J-M Farms, Inc. when Virgil and Joe purchased Darrell McClain’s interest in the company on April 15, 1982.

The first mushrooms were picked on March 13, 1980, and the first delivery was made the following day to Associated Wholesale Grocers of Springfield, Missouri. During the summer of 1983, expansion construction began, which increased the farm’s growing capacity by 100 percent.

Crossland built that new addition and the shipping cooler, truck shop, and additions to the front office were also completed at that time. Another expansion of 16 percent came in 1986.

In 1991, construction began on their third major expansion, increasing capacity by yet another 50 percent. Building expansions and changes in technology have allowed the farm to grow from its original size and growing capacity.

J-M Farms, Inc. packs under the J-M Fresh label. Its fleet of trucks deliver products to Oklahoma, Texas, Arkansas, Mississippi, New Mexico, Kansas, Missouri and Iowa. From the beginning, J-M Farms has built on the foundational belief that it is their people who have made this possible.