Sanderson Farms to build new poultry complex
Sanderson Farms announced that a site located in the town of St. Pauls and Robeson County, North Carolina, has been selected for construction of a new poultry processing plant and waste water treatment facility, and that the company has sites under consideration for a new hatchery.
These facilities will comprise a state-of-the-art poultry complex with the capacity to process 1.25 million birds per week for the big bird deboning market. At full capacity, the complex will employ approximately 1,100 people, will require 100 contract growers, and will be equipped to process and sell approximately 500 million pounds of dressed poultry meat annually at full production.
$139 million investment
Sanderson Farms expects to invest approximately $139 million in the new North Carolina complex, which includes upgrades to its Kinston, North Carolina, feed mill, and anticipates that associated contract growers will invest an additional $168 million in poultry production facilities. The company expects to begin construction of the facilities this summer, with initial operations of the new complex to begin during the fourth fiscal quarter of 2016.
New marketing opportunities in fresh food service market
According to Joe F. Sanderson, Jr., chairman and chief executive officer of Sanderson Farms, Inc., the selection of these sites followed a thorough due diligence process and approval by the company's board of directors. "We believe this expansion will enhance our ability to drive revenues and earnings and allow us to continue our record of building long-term value for our shareholders. The additional capacity of 1.25 million birds per week represented by the new complex will provide new marketing opportunities for the company in the fresh food service market."
Discovery of avian influenza in the United States
Commenting on recent reports regarding the discovery of avian influenza in the United States, Sanderson noted that none of the company's flocks has been affected. "Avian influenza has not been identified in any of the states in which we have operations and live inventory," said Sanderson. "However, we have taken this opportunity to remind all of our contract poultry producers and our employees that we requires strict adherence to our biosecurity program, and have reminded them of the program's specific requirements and procedures. Consistent with standard industry practice, all of our flocks are tested for avian influenza before they are processed," concluded Sanderson.
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