House of Raeford, one of the nation’s top 10 largest chicken processors, has announced that affiliate Columbia Farms will build a US$16 million broiler hatchery with SmartPro incubation systems in the Batesburg-Leesville area of South Carolina.

The hatchery will be equipped with SmartPro setters and hatchers, a complete HVAC system and an entire range of hatchery automation systems. The hatchery will employ around 20 staff to produce about a million birds a week on four hatch days. Construction is expected to take up to 18 months.

The quality of the day-old chicks compelled Columbia Farms to select Pas Reform’s SmartPro system from NatureForm Hatchery Technologies for the hatchery.