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Foster Farms values chicken wings

Foster Farms' cooked chicken plant in Porterville, California, USA, expanded wing-processing capacity in hopes of capturing key foodservice accounts.


Foster Farms' produces some 14 million kg of chicken wings a year. Although the plant also produces millions of kg of cooked chicken strips, whole-muscle products and formed chicken products for retail and foodservice annually, the most recent expansion was a strategic decision to support Foster Farm's wing business, explains Paul Bravinder, manager of cooked chicken and a 23-year industry veteran who joined Foster Farms in 2001.

The plant started off with two processing lines in 1999, but has already expanded with another two lines since then. “We made a decision as a company to get serious as far as the wing business is concerned,” he says. “Prior to last year, we were producing all of the formed product, as well as the wings, on the same line. What [the expansion] did is allow us to dedicate this line 100% to our wing manufacturing, and that allowed us to go after some key wing accounts.” The expansion landed the company accounts with key foodservice operators on the West Coast.

“It's industry-standard equipment, but it's the high-capacity line that we needed. One of the things that we've been working on is automated delivery of wings to the line,” adds Bravinder.


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