Costco CEO Craig Jelinek told the Omaha World Herald that the company is still working on plans for a poultry operation in eastern Nebraska. The company is working with the city of Fremont to secure the necessary permits, he explained.

“Until we have the permit in our hand, we don’t commit to anything,” Jelinek said. He said Costco hopes to start construction in 2017. “We hope to get it done.”

Fremont City Administrator Brian Newton said Wednesday that the city has received a site development permit application and is in the process of reviewing it. The project may also need state environmental permits for emissions or wastewater discharge, the Herald reports.

Costco’s proposed plant would provide its Midwestern stores with chicken by building a poultry processing plant in Fremont and establishing a network of contract poultry growers in eastern Nebraska. The plant and network would be operated by a third-party company, Lincoln Premium Poultry, a Georgia company.

Jelinek said the project makes sense because of the volume of chicken Costco sells. Costco stores are known for $4.99 rotisserie chickens.

“We think we can bring a better value to our members by doing it ourselves,” Jelinek said. “We’re able to take some of the costs out of it, while still paying high wages. There’s not another supplier in there taking the profitability out of it.”

Source: Omaha World Herald