Canadian poultry partnership moves on new plant

by Bryan Salvage
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ST.-FRANÇOIS-DE-MADAWASKA, NB – Sunnymel, the partnership formed by Olymel LP and Groupe Westco, plans to announce the results of an environmental impact study conducted in accordance with the requirements of the New Brunswick Department of Environment. This initiative is part of a plan to build a chicken slaughtering plant in the industrial zone of the Village of Clair in the Madawaska area, near breeding farms. The results of the study will be the topic of public information sessions held in the Village of Clair Friday, Jan. 21 and Saturday, Jan. 22.

This initiative represents an important step toward obtaining environmental permits before construction can be started on a new chicken slaughtering and cutting facility on the land purchased by Sunnymel in the Village of Clair in October 2009.

Combining the expertise of Westco, the largest poultry producer in New Brunswick, with that of Olymel, a processor with a strong presence in the Canadian market, the Sunnymel partnership is designed to serve the entire Maritimes market from New Brunswick. The project, which will have a slaughtering capacity of 450,000 birds per week, represents an investment of $40 million and is expected to create close to 250 jobs.

Groupe Westco Inc. is a New Brunswick company based in Saint-François-de-Madawaska. Westco owns its own hatcheries, breeding farms and shipping companies, and is also one of the largest poultry production organizations in Canada.

Olymel LP is a slaughtering, processing and distributor of pork and poultry meat products in Canada, with facilities in Québec, Ontario and Alberta. The company employs approximately10,000 persons and exports nearly half its production, mainly to the US, Japan and Australia, as well as some sixty other countries. Its sales stood at $2 billion this year, with a slaughtering and processing capacity of 160,000 hogs and 1.7 million poultry every week. The company markets its products mainly under the Olymel, Lafleur and Flamingo brands.
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