Chicken processor Bell & Evans have announced projects that will bring more than 1,300 jobs to Pennsylvania. The company recently held a groundbreaking ceremony on a new $44 million processing facility in Fredericksburg that will bring about 380 jobs to Lebanon County. It also announced plans for its other facilities that will add about 1,000 new jobs, reports the Lebanon Daily News.

The new facility will be 160,000 square feet in size and is located along Interstate 78, making it ideal for the company’s shipping processes.

"This versatile plant will allow us to package, dry-rub, marinate, grind and cook, plus many other options that we haven't even considered – over 2 ½ million pounds of chicken per week," said Bell & Evans chief financial officer Dan Chirico. "We need this plant to continue supplying our ever-growing demand of customers like Whole Foods Market and Wegmans."

The new plant has been under construction since March and will be completed in the spring of 2015. Bell & Evans also plans to construct another facility in the area that was the former home of Keystone Protein. Keystone Protein operated a poultry rendering facility, and Bell & Evans will continue that operation, processing for organic and natural pet food products. The company will also add a hatchery and a small kosher plant to the complex.

"On that property, we're planning to build a world-class new slaughterhouse," said Scott Sechler, Bell & Evans’ owner. "When it's fully built out, it will produce over 3 million chickens a week."

Source: Lebanon Daily News