BETHLEHEM, Ga. – Harrison Poultry Inc. will be under new leadership at the end of April. Current vice president of operations, David Bleth, will be assuming the role of president and CEO. He will succeed Mike Welch who announced March 15 that he will be retiring from his role as president/CEO. Welch will continue to work with Harrison in an advisory capacity.

“It has been my privilege to work at Harrison Poultry for 26 years,” Welch said. “I believe now is the right time for new leadership to take the company forward, and retiring from Harrison Poultry is right for my family and me.”

During his five decade tenure in the poultry industry, Welch served as chairman of the National Chicken Council and as a board member of industry organizations including the Georgia Poultry Federation, the Georgia Poultry Improvement Association and the World Poultry Foundation (WPF).

Bleth joined Harrison Poultry in 2009 as vice president of operations after serving in a number of engineering and leadership roles at various companies including Hormel, Baader, Wayne Farms, Gold ‘n Plump and American Seafoods Group.

“I’m very pleased that David has been named our new President/ CEO,” Welch said. “His leadership has been critical to our dramatic scale growth, capability expansion, and productivity increases since I recruited him to Harrison. He has exciting plans to improve our total efficiency and volume and adapt our offering mix to market trends and our customers’ needs. I’m confident that he will continue to provide the quality products and superior service our customers have come to expect from Harrison Poultry.”