US meat group Tyson Foods is expanding four of its plants in the country as part of a strategy to “add value” to their products.

Tyson said it has spent US$40m on facilities in Texas, Tennessee, Virginia and Florida.

“Tyson continues the strategy of adding value to our commodity products for retail customers and consumers,” Gary Sheneman, senior vice president of case ready beef and pork at Tyson, said.

The company said the investment “could create as many as 490 jobs”.

Last week, Tyson reported an 11% increase in profits for the first quarter of its financial year.

In November, when Tyson posted its financial results for its last fiscal year, the company said it would look to accelerate growth in value-added poultry.

CEO Donnie Smith told analysts Tyson’s “destiny” was not to become a “low-cost commodity protein company”.