Factory expansion at chicken rearing business is nearly complete

The final phase of work to increase capacity and create new jobs at a Middleton on the Wolds based chicken business is nearing completion.

The £3.3m poultry factory extension project will increase capacity by 20% and create 15 new jobs in the sales and marketing, processing and distribution departments.

Soanes Poultry’s general manager, Nigel Upson, said: “Over the last three years, we have invested several million pounds to make improvements to our factory, the team’s working conditions and our farms.

“Improvements to the effluent plant, energy store, lairage, chiller, packing and portioning rooms have been made, and our new flagship farm at Horn Hill is now complete.

“Maintenance manager, Bestwn Kdr, has done a great job of fabricating bespoke collecting bins for the packing room from sheet steel.

“By the end of the summer, we will have completed work on the effluent collection sump, the offal collection shed, cladding to the rear of the building and the installation of new machinery to improve quality.”

“The marketing team have also made improvements to labelling to highlight the name of the farmer on each pack of whole chickens and portions.

“All of these changes will help us to manage future growth and to maintain and exceed the highest standards of presentation and taste that has won us many awards over the years.”

The first phase of the project, which improved infrastructure and expanded portioning capacity in response to customer needs, was part funded by the European Agriculture Fund for Rural Development with a £583,000 grant secured by Westley Consulting.

Soanes Poultry has been rearing and preparing chicken since 1947. It currently employs 120 people and sells its chicken to butchers and independent retailers in Yorkshire and to wholesalers nationwide.