State News

Cumberland officials could vote to put poultry plant to the public

Posted January 19, 2015
Updated January 20, 2015

Residents who live near a Cumberland County site being considered for a $113 million poultry plant are divided. Some residents say if Sanderson Farms builds the massive new plant, property values will drop, especially because of the odor that come with poultry plants.

— Residents of Cumberland County may get to chime in on tax breaks for a proposed poultry plant after all.

The Cumberland County Board of Commissioners has scheduled a vote for Tuesday to decide whether to call the public hearing necessary to consider a $2.5 million incentive package for Sanderson Farms. The company was considering whether to build a $95 million plant in a county-owned industrial park in Cedar Creek, east of Interstate 95.

Commissioners voted 4-3 against taking the plan to the public early in January, but then at-large Commissioner Charles Evans changed his mind after hearing from constituents.

"I did not have all the information. I did not have all the questions answered that I needed answered," Evans said. "I feel pretty comfortable now that answers are being produced."


The Mississippi-based company told economic development officials last week that it is forgetting about Cumberland County after the commissioners rejection.

The $95 million chicken processing plant could create about 1,000 jobs, but opponents worry about potential truck congestion, dust, and the odors from any expansion of chicken farms supplying the plant.


Under the terms of the incentives plan, Sanderson Farms would create at least 975 jobs – 60 percent of which would go to Cumberland County residents – over three years and not contract with any poultry farms within a 10-mile radius of its facility or within a mile of the Cape Fear River.

In exchange, the county would provide the company a 50 percent grantback of county property taxes to be paid over a nine-year period.


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  • btneast Jan 20, 2015

    BTNEAST.. It is an existing park but is vacant. No other businesses are thereOk....but the fact that the park is ALREADY there tells you that the area is already zoned commercial. An empty business park would raise more questions with home buyers than one that is thriving. Having nearby employment will help home values, not hurt them. I grew up less than a mile from a poultry processing plant, and there was no smell....and that was 40 years ago.

  • abbott134 Jan 20, 2015

    BTNEAST.. It is an existing park but is vacant. No other businesses are there. The property is surrounded by homes and churches on all sides except to the south where the Cape Fear River flows. When/If completed my inlaws home which they have lived in since 1973 will be less than a quarter mile away. Maybe you are right and the values wont be affected but most residents are not willing to take the chance.

  • busyb97 Jan 20, 2015

    As someone whose family home is in the middle of chicken farm country up in Ohio, the bugs are HORRIBLE after the farms went in. The flies,and those beetles (cant remember their name, but they look like ladybugs) is like the plague sometimes...they just are everywhere (inside and out...hard to get rid of). ..and my folks are miles from the farms themselves (i think the closest is about 8-10miles. They can see the feed mill silos that are 4 miles away.)

  • btneast Jan 20, 2015

    But most will not live anywhere near this plant and their property values would not be affected.

    How would you like it if your property value halved overnight..........

    Oh for goodness sakes...their property values will not be affected. This plant would go into an existing business park that already has other industry. It isn't planned to go into a residential area. Secondly, its misinformation that current meat processing plants stink or pollute. Quit believing everything you hear.

  • Jim Hinnant Jan 20, 2015
    user avatar

    Such cowards.

  • Grand Union Jan 20, 2015

    View quoted thread

    But most will not live anywhere near this plant and their property values would not be affected.

    How would you like it if your property value halved overnight..........

  • Mannin Black Jan 20, 2015
    user avatar

    Considering that chicken is the number one source of protein in our house, it would be hypocritical for me to be against a poultry plant in our neighborhood. Or I could join those against it and pass a bucket of fried chicken around. Protesters gotta eat, you know?

  • Mannin Black Jan 20, 2015
    user avatar

    eAt mOrE CHiKeN!

  • James Barefoot Jan 19, 2015
    user avatar

    The people that don't want the plant should , Buy the property, move, I am sure there are people wanting to live close to work,, or move,, I Had NO Choice when I40 Came by my house, except move..

  • babylaceycarpenter Jan 19, 2015

    Some folks oppose this plant, while other support it, while still others want the plant but oppose any monetary incentive. Seems like a special vote may be in order. Allow the citizens of Cumberland County, to decide in a democratic fashion, what will or will not happen. It is however, their county.