The Georgia-headquartered poultry producer has added about 125 poultry farms and grown significantly during the last 12 years, said Frank Singleton, spokesperson with Wayne Farms LLC. The demand for broiler production also has increased.
As part of the company’s ongoing development, earlier this month it purchased a 125-acre site adjacent to the farm’s current feed mill along the Yadkin River in North Carolina, he said.
The vertically-integrated company is one of the largest poultry producers in the US with annual sales of more than $2.2bn and generating more than 2.6bn pounds of poultry products, according to company information.
At this point, the property has been closed on and the deal for the site concluded, Singleton said. Wayne Farms paid $548,500 for the Surry County, North Carolina location, which also includes a railroad line.
“As our business has increased in that area we anticipate the need to expand down the road,” he told us. “This is part of our long-term strategic growth plan for that facility.”
Feed mill focus and planning
The plan at this stage is to maintain the new property until there is cause to expand the current feed mill, said Singleton.
“There’s not [going to be a] decrease for the demand in poultry and given [that] the feed mill is already there and operating, having the piece of land adjacent to it – it made too much sense,” he said of the purchase.
“It worked perfectly with our long-term plans,” he added. Although, the intention is not to build the new feed production facility immediately there already is an awareness that it will be necessary in the future.
“Wayne Farms has a good grasp on long-term strategic [planning],” he said. Adding, “We’re really ingrained in the local community.”
The company has had a facility in the area since the 1980s and bought the site for the feed mill in 1998, according to company information.
“We’re glad to be in that area where people are supportive to farmers,” said Singleton. “It was a good strategic investment for us knowing that we’re going to continue our operation there and expand that.”
The current feed production facility sources local grain and future expansions of feed production would follow that model, he said. “We do purchase as we can in the local market in all the markets that we operate in,” he added.
“It’s always better to feed local corn and local grains to local birds when you can,” Singleton said. “It’s more efficient.”
The feed generated by the vertically-integrated company is used internally for affiliated poultry producers, he said.
Past feed production growth
Previously, Wayne Farms invested $55m in a feed mill in Alabama, which replaced three older production facilities, the company told us at the time.
The amount of feed generated by the new mill was more than the combined output of the older sites, the company reported. That location generates about 25,000 tons of poultry feed on a weekly basis and sits on a 165-acre site.