The building is attached to an existing cooler and will prevent product from getting too warm during the packing and loading process, Holthouse said.
“Once the product gets cold, it stays cold,” he said.
The new building will feature three indoor loading docks for outbound product, Holthouse said. Wolcher Farms’s existing docks will be used exclusively for incoming trucks, he said.
In addition to a higher food-safety profile, the building will give Wolcher Farms the opportunity to do tray-wrapping, clamshell-packing and other activities it couldn’t do before, Holthouse said.
Recent growth at the company mandated the addition, which also paves the way for additional growth, Holthouse said.
“From 2003 to 2009 we’ve grown continuously — 5% to 6% per year,” he said. “We were kind of outgrowing ourselves. And we wouldn’t be spending this kind of money to sit still — we hope to continue to grow.”
Wiers Farm Inc. upgrades equipment, adds technology
Willard, Ohio-based Wiers Farm Inc./Dutch Maid has made several equipment upgrades, added a program that better tracks input costs, installed harvest aids and made other changes to gear up for the 2010 season, said Jim Wiers, the company’s president.
Wiers Farm has upgraded its packinghouse, replacing older equipment with stainless-steel equipment. The move is designed to enhance food safety, Wiers said.
The company also has made upgrades to its green onion and pepper lines in time for the 2010 harvest, he said.
The harvest aids installed by the company this year are machines that will carry harvest buckets for workers in the field, Wiers said.
Land.db software installed this year at Wiers Farm will allow the company to input all of its production costs to find efficiencies.