Chicken processor eyes Cumberland site for plant
Posted July 16
Fayetteville, N.C. — Sanderson Farms officials confirmed Wednesday that they are considering a Cumberland County site for a new chicken processing plant.
The company is looking at building a plant in Cedar Creek Business Center, a county-owned, 480-acre industrial park off Cedar Creek Road east of Interstate 95 that has had trouble attracting tenants since it opened in 2007.
A Sanderson plant would bring 1,000 jobs to the area, and the company would contract with 80 chicken farms in a five-county area to supply the plant, officials said.
Some nearby property owners said they are concerned about the environmental impact of a chicken plant, saying they don't want noxious smells and the potential that waste could contaminate groundwater.
County commissioners said they had similar reservations until they visited a Sanderson plant in Kinston, which they described as clean and state-of-the-art.
Two years ago, intense opposition from residents prompted Sanderson to drop plans for a processing plant in Nash County.
Mississippi-based Sanderson is the third-largest chicken processor in the U.S. Company officials said they are months away from deciding whether to build in Cumberland County.