Perdue announced it's closing its Lebanon County plant and it’s not renewing the lease on its Lancaster County distribution center.
Chicken plant closing: Hundreds will lose jobs
Plant outdated, company official says
“It’s like Chicken USA here,” said Deb Heberling, who runs Gubba’s Pizza Shop.
Fredericksburg, Lebanon County, even has a festival celebrating the bird. It’s home to three chicken-processing plants, but Perdue just announced its closing BC Natural Chicken, cutting about 600 workers.
“I guess the rumors were true,” said Heberling.
Heberling delivers pizzas to the plant every Friday. She said, “It’s going to hurt a lot of people around here. Some of the workers have worked there 20 years or more.”
BC Natural Chicken has been there since 1948. It’s changed hands a number of times, with Perdue buying it in 2011.
A company official explained the closing in a statement: “When we looked at our long term needs, it became clear that BC plant would require significant and costly upgrades, even then we would not overcome the age and physical condition of the facility.”
“The loss of jobs and people being affected is going to hurt,” said Bev Martel, Bethel Township supervisor.
Martel said the township gets about $1,200 a year in property taxes from the plant, but she’s worried about what’s going to happen to the building.
“I’m concerned we have a dinosaur sitting here and what’s going to happen to it,” said Martel.