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Mobile Poultry Processor Finds Lots Of Work
Greg Wierschke and his team take the stress and mess out of processing poultry at small farms using their mobile processor trailers. Clean Chickens and Co., out of Elk River, Minn., is in its fourth and busiest year, with more units and services that bring the processing plant to the farm.
  “Our goal was 6,000 birds a year, but we already have 12,000 booked and anticipate 18,000 because of processing plant closures in the area,” Wierschke says.
  He started the year with a 12 by 6-ft. horse trailer he equipped to scald, clean, pluck, cool and bag poultry that is humanely butchered.
  “We can do 150 chickens in a day in that unit with 3 people,” he explains. Customers just need to provide water and power, and have the birds penned up.
  About half of the jobs (50 birds minimum) are for folks raising chickens for themselves. The rest are for growers who sell processed birds at farmers markets or off the farm.
  This year, to serve growers interested in selling to stores and restaurants, Wierschke equipped a 36-ft. enclosed trailer to meet USDA requirements. It is large enough for up to 5 workers to process nearly 400 birds a day, and he can also take the trailer across state lines.
  For folks with fewer than 50 birds, he rents a DIY trailer with all the equipment to make it easier for them to process their own birds. Or they can just rent a plucker.
  Customers appreciate the time and hassle they save by having a mobile unit come to them versus loading up and spending time to take the birds to a plant. Clean Chickens’ prices start at $5/chicken. They travel up to 50 miles from Elk River for free and add a surcharge after that.
  Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Greg Wierschke, Clean Chicken and Co., Elk River, Minn. (ph 651 500-3780; www.cleanchickens.com; wierschkegreg@gmail.com; Facebook: Clean Chickens and CO).



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2020 - Volume #44, Issue #4