The new chicken harvesting facility in Fredericksburg will enable Bell & Evans to double its current production capacity


Bell & Evans has started construction on new chicken harvesting facility in US. (Credit: PRNewswire / Bell & Evans)

Poultry producer Bell & Evans has commenced construction on a new US organic-certified chicken harvesting facility with an investment of around $330m.

Located at Fredericksburg in Pennsylvania, the new chicken harvesting facility will allow the company to double its current production capacity.

Stellar, the design-build firm, has been contracted by Bell & Evans to deliver the new facility. Stellar already served as the engineer for the company’s 2015 further processing and packaging facility and 2017 organic certified, animal-welfare-focused chicken hatchery.

Bell & Evans aims to commence operations at the new facility by late 2021

The company placed the first precast walls in July and plans to commence the operations at the facility by late 2021.

The additional capacity will enable the company to continue expanding its organic production to up to 50% of total production to meet increasing customer requirements.

Bell & Evans’ new European-Plus chicken harvesting facility features Thermomass precast concrete exterior walls, which delivers thermal rating.

The company will use acid brick flooring for all production floors to withstand corrosion. Its freezer floors will be insulated with six inches of extruded polystyrene to avoid frost haul.

Bell & Evans will not use wood in any production areas nor any painted surfaces in processing space and will use white concrete on the interior sides of the precast walls to deliver a bright environment for production team members.

The new chicken harvesting facility will use a fully computerised utility system to improve water and energy efficiency and reusage.

Marel’s advanced equipment and an upgraded 100% air chill system will help minimise water usage in the plant.

Bell & Evans owner Scott Sechler said: “I have been all over the world, including Europe dozens of times, visiting poultry operations and suppliers.

“I have a really good grasp of what’s out there, and I like to take the best practices I find and make them even better to fit our Bell & Evans model. In Europe, producers have the right mindset. They build to last. I describe our project as ‘European-Plus’.”