Wayne Farms LLC this week marked the official start of a major expansion project at its Enterprise Fresh Processing Facility that will significantly increase production and add 400 jobs.
The company’s $105 million expansion is expected to be complete in January 2019. With the new hires, Wayne Farms’ workforce at the Enterprise facility will number more than 1,700.
“This investment in our Enterprise operation is a strategic decision,” Wayne Farms President and CEO Clint Rivers said. “The expansion is part of our ongoing growth in south Alabama.
“We’ve invested more than $200 million in the Wiregrass area, and it’s a success story for us and the communities where we live and work — the relationship has been outstanding, the workforce is solid and the support from business, government and community leaders has been exemplary,” he added.
Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey joined company leaders and local business and community officials at a groundbreaking ceremony in Coffee County that signified the start of Wayne Farms’ project.
“When businesses are expanding their efforts in Alabama, it is a sign that what we are doing is working,” Ivey said. “With this expansion, Wayne Farms will not only be able to better serve their customers and to grow their business, they will also provide a good wage for 400 more Alabamians.
“When we provide a favorable business climate, employers and employees succeed; thus, our state succeeds,” she added.
The expansion project will add a new processing line with state-of-the-industry technologies and processing equipment. It will focus on Wayne Farms’ new Naked Truth premium chicken brand.
“Wayne Farms is making the largest single economic development investment in the history of Coffee County,” said Jonathan Tullos, executive director of the Wiregrass Economic Development Corp. “This investment of $105 million will help create 400 direct job opportunities for people throughout the Wiregrass.
“Our communities and farmers will benefit from additional sales in retail and consumer goods,” he said. “We are fortunate to have good corporate partners, like Wayne Farms, who continue to invest in our region.”
Brad Williams, south Alabama area complex manager, said the project will increase production at the facility by 30 percent.
Wayne Farms is one of the largest poultry producers in the U.S., with annual sales exceeding $2 billion. It operates three production complexes in Alabama’s Wiregrass region, where it employs more than 3,000 people.
This story originally appeared on the Alabama Department of Commerce’s Made in Alabama website.