Tyson breaks ground on Arkansas incubation center

State-of-the-art facility to be built with latest advances in biosecurity measures.

Tyson Foods Inc. chairman John Tyson, along with Springdale, Ark., mayor Doug Sprouse and company board members and executives, broke ground May 5 on the future site of a new incubation center. The completed project will deliver hatching operations for the company’s northwest Arkansas broiler chicken business.

“We have a rich heritage in Springdale, and we’re proud to continue our tradition of investment here with the new incubation center,” Tyson said.  “Since we’re a company that’s always looking for ways to be better, world-class innovation will be a key part of this building.”

The incubation center will be located at the corner of East Huntsville Ave. and North Monitor Rd. in east Springdale and will be built with an emphasis on technology. The company plans to install robotics to assist with worker safety and ergonomics and use state-of-the-art ventilation and internal environmental controls. The facility will be built with the latest advances in biosecurity measures in order to help promote better overall bird health.

The project calls for more than 75,000 sq. ft. of new construction, which is scheduled to be completed in mid-2017. Operations at the incubation center will replace the company’s hatchery in Lincoln, Ark., and the hatchery on Randall Wobbe Rd. in Springdale, which has been in operation since the 1960s. The incubation center will employ about 35 people once it’s fully operational.

In October, Tyson Foods announced that it would renovate property in downtown Springdale, including its original headquarters at 319 E. Emma Ave. and the adjacent building at 317 E. Emma Ave. A new two-story, 44,000 sq. ft. structure will be constructed on the site, preserving the original frontage. Workspace for more than 200 people will be created by the project, which is scheduled to be completed in the second half 2017.

Tyson Foods employs more than 6,000 people in Springdale and nearly 23,000 people in Arkansas. More than 1,700 family farmers in the state grow chickens for its operations. The company also purchases cattle, pigs, grain, diesel and other utilities in Arkansas and estimates its annual statewide economic impact to be more than $1.6 billion.

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