ABERDEEN - A northern South Dakota beef processing plant says it's laying off 108 of its 420 employees until it can raise enough money to buy more cattle.

Northern Beef Packers president David Palmer says the plant has raised more than $150 million, but it's putting a planned ramp up on hold until it can raise about $20 million more.

Palmer says the plant is working with additional foreign investors, international trading companies, established food companies and financial investors.

He says it's an unfortunate setback, but he's confident that it's a temporary one.

The plant is currently processing about 200 cattle a day from the Dakotas, Nebraska, Iowa and Minnesota. Plans call for the laid-off employees to come back by late July so the plant can eventually process 1,500 cattle a day.

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