US meat producer, Tyson Foods is making major improvements to its Vienna, Georgia poultry plant as part of an ongoing plan to maximise efficiencies and meet growing demand for its products.
The capital improvement project, valued at more than $110 million, will bolster the future of the operation and create more than 500 jobs in Vienna.
The Vienna plant has been producing chicken for food service customers, including restaurant chains, but will convert to supply fresh tray pack chicken to meet the needs of regional retail customers. Work began at the location in mid-January and is scheduled to be completed in mid-2015.
The project will upgrade parts of the plant and add about 100,000 square feet. Improvements will include new equipment and production lines, as well as processes and technology designed to benefit food safety, quality and workplace safety.
“The existing infrastructure, location and the availability of workers make the Vienna plant ideal for this expansion project,” said Noel White, president of poultry for Tyson Foods. “This project will improve the plant’s product mix and make it even more cost competitive.”
Tyson Foods purchased the Vienna plant in 1995. The facility currently employs about 700 people, generating an annual payroll of more than $15.6 million. In addition, the company paid family farmers more than $30 million during its 2014 fiscal year to grow chickens to supply its southern Georgia operations.