Herbruck's Poultry Ranch recently unveiled a cutting-edge two-mills-in-one feed manufacturing facility to meet growing demand for organic and conventional eggs. The $11-million investment will produce 7,200 tons of conventional and organic feed per week right at the site of its egg production complex south of Ionia.
"This investment reflects the commitment by Herbruck's Poultry Ranch to continue providing safe, affordable and nutritious eggs to meet consumer demand, as well as the potential of Michigan's egg industry to expand even more, creating new opportunities and jobs in our state," says Greg Herbruck, corporate vice president of Herbruck's Poultry Ranch.
"Herbruck's new feed production facilities are the result of innovation and hard work by countless people who want to provide the best products to consumers and the best care to our hens, and that's something we celebrate," says company President Stephen Herbruck. "As a family business with deep roots in Michigan, we are proud of our investment, which sends a clear signal that we are focused on growing our business, meeting new demands, supporting our employees and driving Michigan agriculture forward."
Herbruck's feed production complex is actually two side-by-side mills: The Portland Road Mill will have a capacity of 4,000 tons per week of feed for conventional egg production, while the Great Lakes Organic Mill will have a capacity of 3,200 tpw of feed for organic eggs. Started in June 2011, the project employed around 120 people during the construction phase.
Building an on-site feed production complex will allow Herbruck's to deliver feed directly to its hens via conveyor and significantly reduce the need to truck finished feed to Herbruck's from outside, reducing costs, communication lags and delivery time. When the complex is fully operational on Labor Day – the organic facility went online in July – Herbruck's will eliminate 75 truck trips each week for 2.8 million of its 6 million hens.
The facility will also increase efficiency by deploying new technology and allow Herbruck's to make continuous quality improvements. These include using completely enclosed receiving and load-out areas to prevent dust from escaping; and using dust collection bag houses at receiving pits, corn grinders, elevator legs and mixers. The new complex will also reduce risks to hens' feed supply.