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Construction Starts on Sunnymel Plant

by 5m Editor
30 August 2011, at 10:39am

NEW BRUNSWICK, CANADA - Olymel and Westco have started development at the Sunnymel plant in the village of Clair.

Executives of Olymel l.p. and Groupe Westco have announced the various stages in the construction of the Sunnymel poultry slaughtering and cutting plant, a project valued at more than C$40 million that will create some 250 jobs. This ultra-modern plant will be located at 501 Principale in the Village of Clair in the Madawaska region, and will occupy an area of approximately 6,430 square metres on a 250,000-square metre plot. Once in operation, the facility will have a slaughtering capacity of 450,000 birds per week, enabling it to serve the entire Maritimes market. The work, which should take about a year to complete, will be carried out in two phases.

Phase 1: site development

Work to prepare the site of the future plant has been under way since mid-August. The preparatory work includes construction of an access road and a work area for contractors, drainage and levelling of the site to accommodate infrastructures and, lastly, fencing off of the site. This extensive series of tasks that precede the start of plant infrastructure construction represents an investment of $2.2 million. The work will span a two-month period ending on 1 November 2011.

Phase 2: plant construction

Once the site preparatory work is completed, construction proper, including foundations, installation of water conduits and the erection of buildings will begin this fall. Invitations to tender for the construction of the facilities have already been sent out. The construction phase should last one year, and the plant will be equipped with the most advanced, efficient equipment in the poultry processing industry, in the areas of production and bio-safety as well as environmental protection. The entire project represents an injection of more than $40 million into the New Brunswick economy.

In conjunction with this project, Sunnymel has passed the environmental assessment process which began at the end of 2010 and received certification of a favourable decision from the New Brunswick Department of Environment on 30 June. Since then, Sunnymel has also met all the conditions contained in the Certificate of Determination by obtaining the approval of the Environmental Management Plan as well as approval for the construction from the Department of Environment.

In making the announcement, Olymel l.p. President and CEO Réjean Nadeau and Groupe Westco President and CEO Thomas Soucy, expressed their satisfaction that a project that took shape three years ago with the formation of the partnership Sunnymel has finally come to fruition.

They said: "As partners, we have done our homework. We have always believed that the union of a large processor and distributor firmly established in Canada, such as Olymel, with the largest poultry producer in New Brunswick, Groupe Westco, was the best solution for the future of the poultry industry in the Maritimes. By pooling our expertise and know-how we will reap the benefits of farm-to-plate integration, a business model that is better able to meet the needs of the entire poultry chain, from producers to distributors and consumers. This major investment and the operations that will follow will also serve the economic development of New Brunswick by creating wealth for workers and their families as well as many local and regional businesses."