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Well-Fed Chickens, 80 New Jobs Near Ozark

Wayne Farms opened its new South Alabama Feed Mill near Ozark in January and soon will be channeling feed to millions of presumably grateful chickens in the Wiregrass area.

Members of the Alabama Legislature attending the Wayne Farms mill opening, from left: Alabama Reps. Steve Clouse (R-Ozark) and Donnie Chesteen (R-Geneva), Ag & Industries Commissioner John McMillan, Rep. Paul Lee (R-Dothan) and House Agriculture Committee Chair Rep. David Sessions (R-Grand Bay).

Members of the Alabama Legislature attending the Wayne Farms mill opening, from left: Alabama Reps. Steve Clouse (R-Ozark) and Donnie Chesteen (R-Geneva), Ag & Industries Commissioner John McMillan, Rep. Paul Lee (R-Dothan) and House Agriculture Committee Chair Rep. David Sessions (R-Grand Bay).

Wayne Farms opened its new South Alabama Feed Mill near Ozark in January and soon will be channeling feed to millions of presumably grateful chickens in the Wiregrass area. The massive concrete structure represents a $55 million investment, no doubt tempting more than one wag to remark that such economic growth isn’t chicken feed.

“This project means the world to our county,” Dale County Commission Chairman Mark Blankenship told AlfaFarmers.org reporter Debra Davis. “I think we may become known as the chicken capital of the world, and that’s fine with us. It means jobs and opportunity for our citizens.”

The 50,000-square-foot facility stands 232 feet tall on 165 acres. It’s described as one of the largest feed mills in North America, able to churn out 25,000 tons of feed a week, primarily made of corn and soybeans. According to Wayne Farms CEO Clint Rivers, it also adds 80 jobs to the local economy representing $3 million in annual payroll. South Alabama Feed Mill is part of a $150 million expansion by Wayne Farms in southeast Alabama that includes farm expansions and updated processing facilities.

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