Poultry breeder Aviagen opened its first hatchery in Russia July 8. The $10 million facility is in Yasnorgsk, in the Tula region of Southwest Russia, a central location chosen for its close proximity to transportation and lack of other poultry facilities, rivers or lakes nearby.

The hatchery can produce 5.5 million day-old female parent stock chicks yearly, and has room to expand to 7.5 million chicks. Company officials called Russia a “crucial market” upon opening this flagship facility, noting that the market for poultry in the country is set to see marked growth in the next five years.