The 2 Sisters Food Group has announced a £45m upgrade to its processing plant in Scunthorpe, including an investment in new robotic cells to create a fully automated process that will increase the capacity of the site by a third to 2.4m birds a week.
The company said the investment will “future-proof” the Scunthorpe operation, securing over 1600 jobs, as well as improving animal welfare, quality and the presentation of the finished product. The upgrade is part of a £150m poultry investment programme unveiled recently by the company, alongside its full year results.
“The project has taken many months of planning and our goal has always been to build a truly world class facility,” said 2 Sisters’ Scunthorpe general manager, Dan Whillock. “We will be using the very latest technology to ensure the highest standards of animal welfare, bio security and product quality.”
The Scunthorpe site opened in 1988 and was, at the time, the biggest facility of its kind in Europe at over 800,000 square feet and capable of processing 900,000 birds a week for fresh, frozen and value added categories.
Feed mills, hatcheries and farms were constructed at the same time as the factory to ensure an extensive local agricultural base was in place in close proximity to the factory to keep animal transportation to a minimum and to optimise bio-security.
Today, the site processes 1.8m birds a week for a number of major retailers.