Poultry processor Koch Foods is investing $20 million to expand its broiler operations in Calhoun, Randolph, Cleburne, Clay and St. Clair counties in Alabama. Koch Foods representatives and Alabama state officials announced the expansion plans in Randolph County on October 28.

The expansion is expected to create as many as 150 jobs and could generate nearly $6 million in total annual income for chicken producers in the region, who are having chicken houses built on their property to accommodate the needs being brought on through the expansion.

Koch Foods' growth plans were made possible through a partnership with state officials and agencies, which will provide $108,000 in federally required environmental waste management plans for area chicken farmers involved in the expansion.

Keith Martin, live operations manager for Koch Foods, told the Anniston Star the environmental waste management plans were needed for every area chicken farm associated with the company before any expansion efforts could begin. By law, a comprehensive nutrient management plan is required before the farmer can get a loan to construct a chicken house, Martin added.

Koch's expansion calls for the construction of between 120 and 150 chicken houses.