Aviagen, a leading poultry breeding company, announced that it has completed a $9.5 million expansion of its hatchery in Sallisaw, Okla. The expansion promoted the Sallisaw hatchery to the largest in Aviagen’s U.S. fleet, increasing the hatchery’s performance by 50% and its workforce by 20%.
Initially opened in 1993, the hatchery had a former capacity of 33.5 million eggs set annually. Now that the expansion project is complete, Sallisaw has a potential to set up to 50.3 million eggs per year (322,560 per week) — a nearly 50% rise. Additionally, while the previous Sallisaw operation hatched two to three days per week, the newly expanded hatchery could increase to a four-day hatch week.
To accommodate the larger operation, the Sallisaw facility plans to augment its workforce by 20%, adding 15 staff positions to its current 71 full-time employees.
Groundwork construction on the original 56,800 sq. ft. hatchery began in November 2014. When completed last month, the newly renovated facility boasted an additional 16,350 sq. ft., as well as modernized, state-of-the art technology, which includes 24 new Jamesway P-40 setters and 24 P-20 hatchers.
The Oklahoma hatchery supplies parent and grandparent stock for all of Aviagen’s commercial brands.
According to Jason Mack, vice president of operations, Aviagen North America, the expansion is a direct response to a growing global demand for Aviagen products.
"The Sallisaw hatchery ships broiler breeding stock to customers all around the world, including North America, Asia and Latin America. The expansion will better position us to keep pace as our worldwide customer base continues to increase," Mack said. "Because the Sallisaw hatchery is a crucial part of our operation, a strategic investment in its expansion is an investment in the future success of Aviagen as a whole."