SIOUX FALLS, S.D. — The new owner of a northeast Iowa kosher slaughterhouse said Tuesday he will hire local residents and use a federal verification system to ensure his employees are in the U.S. legally.
Hershey Friedman bought the Postville plant that was once the nation's largest kosher slaughterhouse in July, more than a year after a massive immigration raid. The plant had been owned by Agriprocessors, Inc., which filed for bankruptcy months after the raid.
The first of two trials for the plant's former top manager began Tuesday.
In one of his first interviews since buying the company, Friedman told The Associated Press he'll use the government's E-Verify system for new hires and will pay new workers from Postville and the surrounding area more than minimum wage. Agriprocessors, where 389 illegal immigrants were arrested by federal agents, didn't use E-Verify.
"You have to do your best to get the local community first," said Friedman, who was born and raised in Montreal. If the plant can't find a local work force, "Then I'll have to worry about it afterward."