Herbruck’s Poultry Ranch could begin construction on a new egg production farm in Mercersburg, Pennsylvania, as soon as March 2018, an area economic development official said.

Herbruck’s, the 13th largest egg company in the United States, in April 2016 announced on its website it had the desire to construct a new facility in the Mercersburg area, but at the time was still seeking public input. Since that time, the company proceeded with plans and had applied for the necessary permits to build the facility. The company has received land development approval from Montgomery Township and a state permit for a concentrated animal feeding operation (CAFO), reported Public Opinion Online.

The operation is expected to house as many as 2.4 million hens that would lay about 1 billion eggs per year. When fully operational, the new Herbruck’s Poultry Ranch facility will employ about 190 people.

When Herbruck’s announced the project, the company stated that a facility in the Mercersburg area would better allow it to serve customers along the East Coast as demand for its products increases.

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Michael L. Ross, president of the Franklin County Area Economic Development Corporation (FCADC) , said the company could have started construction earlier this fall, but instead opted to be sure everything was approved. “They are methodically working their way through the appeal process successfully.”

Herbruck’s purchases warehouse

To help meet deliveries and customer demand, Herbruck’s has purchased a warehouse in Franklin County from FCADC for $1 million, Ross said. Refrigeration equipment has been installed there, and the company intends to use the warehouse facility until the new Mercersburg facility is fully operational.

Another Herbruck’s Poultry Ranch expansion project

In October, Herbruck’s also announced that it was expanding its egg farm in Ionia County, Michigan. That project entails the construction of three cage-free pullet-rearing facilities to raise 2.5 million young hens annually.

The Ionia County expansion represents a $16.3 million capital investment.