Tyson Foods Inc. of Springdale will invest more than $31 million in a high-tech broiler hatchery at a new location in east Springdale.
John Tyson, chairman of the company, along with Springdale Mayor Doug Sprouse and company board members and executives broke ground Thursday at the site. 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 in a news release. “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 Avenue and North Monitor Road 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, which is designed to help promote better overall bird health, according to the release.
“John Tyson and the Tyson family have made the revitalization of downtown Springdale a priority. Even though this project isn’t officially ‘downtown,’ it’s at the end of Emma Avenue and is proof of Tyson Foods’ commitment to our town,” Sprouse said. “The city of Springdale is honored to be home to Tyson Foods and we’re grateful for this additional investment.”
The project calls for more than 75,000 SF of new construction, which is scheduled to be complete in mid-2017. Operations at the Incubation Center will replace the company’s hatchery in Lincoln, and the hatchery on Randall Wobbe Road in Springdale, which has been in operation since the 1960s.
About 35 people will be employed at the incubation center once it’s fully operational. In October, the company announced that it would renovate property in the city’s downtown, including its original headquarters located at 319 E. Emma Ave., and the adjacent building at 317 E. Emma Ave.
A two-story, 44,000-SF structure will be built 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 of 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 at more than $1.6 billion.