By Devin Bartolotta

BALTIMORE (WJZ)– A growing business is bringing new job opportunities to West Baltimore.

Holly Poultry officially opened its doors Wednesday to the new 37,000-foot processing plant with a focus on keeping things local.

The new plant could hire as many as 200 new employees in the next few years, which is a huge opportunity for a neighborhood plagued by blight.

“It’s a huge company. It’s good,” employee James Wright said.

“This facility allows us to grow four times. And we’re planning to do that in the 3 to 5 year window,” said CEO Zach Fine.

The facility is responsible for prepping meat for customers from New York to Richmond.

As much as 800,000 pounds of chicken will go through the facility every week. Much of it will stay local and go to Baltimore businesses.

“We’re a family owned business from Baltimore. So we want to hire people who are here from the city of Baltimore, especially West Baltimore,” Fine said.

Efforts to revitalize West Baltimore have been chugging along.

A $75 million city and state effort is still underway to knock out blighted homes in city neighborhoods.

Now with possibly hundreds of more jobs soon being available on the processing line, local employees say it’s feeding Maryland families in more ways than one.

“This area, you can tell, is not the best area. But we’re trying to get the best people from this area to work. And it’s working, it’s working,” Wright said.

Holly Poultry hired 25 people this year in anticipation of the new facility opening.

Eighty percent of Holly Poultry’s employees are from Baltimore City.

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