Southern Foods, Greensboro, N.C., broke ground on an 88,000-square-foot meat and fish processing facility in Greensboro.

The site, constructed by A M King, Charlotte, N.C., consists of an unfinished precast concrete building on Westcliff Road, that when complete, will allow Southern Foods to move to a modern space, shore up its Southeast business and open the company’s largest test kitchen to date. The project is scheduled to be complete by late 2019.

Southern Foods, a Cheney Brothers, Inc. affiliate, is a full-service seafood, premium meats, artisanal cheese and global and local specialty goods supplier.

“A M King has provided exceptional design and project management experience and services. This is the second project we have done with A M King, and look forward to a continued relationship with them for years to come,” says Warren Newell, director of development for Cheney Brothers.

The company needed an efficient space that combines cold and dry storage for distribution, refrigerated food processing spaces, a mezzanine for ample office space and a large area for the test kitchen and walk-up market.

Early on it was decided to use everything possible, including the roof and walls, recycle what couldn’t be used and build what was necessary to meet the owner’s needs. A M King’s design team finalized permitting and satisfied two different building code requirements; focused on how to minimally modify the structure while supporting complex processes; and developed a plan for efficiently incorporating sizeable operations into a smaller, but more streamlined facility.

“The message of this project is powerful,” says Jami Lloyd, architectural designer, A M King. “We can do just as much with a building and parts of a building already in place than we can starting from scratch.”

The scope of work includes approximately 14,250 square feet of dry storage; 13,500 square feet of food processing areas; 12,660 square feet of office mezzanine; 11,585 square feet of freezers; and 11,429 square feet of coolers/dock. The facility will also include nearly 5,000 square feet of dry dock and fish dock areas. It will be fitted with 26-foot clear height racking, a test kitchen, dry meat age room, cheese processing room and express purchasing for the general public.

A M King will handle HVAC and electrical commissioning, and will be responsible for final connections of owner equipment.

“We cannot wait to get into our new processing facility,” says Bill Mutton, President of Southern Foods.