Allen Harim moving corporate headquarters to Millsboro

MILLSBORO — Allen Harim, a leading poultry producer and processor on Delmarva, will be moving its corporate headquarters from Seaford to just outside of Millsboro.

Allen Harim announced Monday company plans to relocate its corporate headquarters from Seaford to the former Vlasic pickle facility it purchased in 2014 in Millsboro and add more than 100 jobs there.

The company has hired Delmarva Veteran Builders, a company based in Salisbury, to oversee construction of the new headquarters. That company hires primarily veterans for construction projects, and has estimated the new office space should be ready for occupancy by the first quarter of 2018.

“This is an exciting time for our company, as we approach our 100th anniversary on Delmarva in 2019,” said Allen Harim president/CEO Joe Moran. “Seaford has been our home for the past century, but it’s time to look forward to the future and where this company is heading. We’ve outgrown our space in Seaford, and this location puts us closer to our processing plant in Harbeson, and our brand-new hatchery in Dagsboro which should be finished by next fall. This is an ideal location that gives us an opportunity to create a more modern and efficient workspace and we look forward to the next 100 years for Allen Harim.”

The project will involve extensive interior renovations of about 20,000 square feet of space for the 50 employees who work in the company’s headquarters. Plans call for improvements to the exterior façade and the company is exploring the use of solar energy to help power at least part of the facility.

“We are honored to have been chosen to be a part of this project,” said Chris Eccleston, president of Delmarva Veteran Builders and a U.S. Navy veteran. “This is another great project that will help put veterans to work, and we applaud Allen Harim’s continued investment on Delmarva and their commitment to our veterans.”

Other uses of the 460,000-square-foot building will include a consignment warehouse operation that will store boxes and other packaging materials from International Paper and other vendors that are used in the Allen Harim production process.

The company is also planning to house a de-boning operation in about 50,000 square feet of the facility, where chicken that has already been processed at its Harbeson processing plant will be deboned and repackaged for customers. No additional chickens will need to be processed in Harbeson to accommodate the de-boning operation.

“This is work that’s already being done outside of the state and we’re excited to be bringing that work back to Delaware,” Mr. Moran said. “We will be creating about 165 jobs in Millsboro and bringing back economic activity to our home state.”

Mr. Moran said the company is keeping the promise it made in late 2015 to not use the plant as a slaughter facility. The de-boning process uses just a fraction of the water used in a traditional slaughter plant, officials said.

In the press release announcing relocation plans, the company reiterated its committement to upgrading the wastewater treatment process to provide a wastewater solution that is environmentally friendly.

“We listened to the neighbors and heard their concerns. Ultimately, we are working toward the goal of getting out of the stream,” Mr. Moran said.

In addition to its Millsboro and Harbeson locations, Allen Harim operates a breeding operation in Liberty, North Carolina, a hatchery in Dagsboro, and a hatchery and feed mill in Seaford. The company employs more than 1,750 people in the United States, as well as more than 230 independent growers and 20 company farms across Delmarva.

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