Bell & Evans

Bell & Evans Achieves Best-in-Class Efficiency at Award-Winning Poultry Plant with Intralox Box-Handling System

Open top white box lined with blue plastic transferring between conveyors on ARB transfer unit. Box is labelled "100% Air Chilled Chicken"

The entire experience was seamless. The system arrived on schedule, and everything fit perfectly. The Intralox material-handling system played a big role in allowing us to start up at 83% in week one of operation of a brand-new plant, 95% in week two, and 98%+ ever since. Intralox’s partnership has played a big role in the success of our award-winning processing plant.

Mike Bracrella
COO of Bell & Evans

Customer Objectives

Renowned North American poultry processor Bell & Evans was designing a state-of-the-art poultry facility in Pennsylvania. They’d collaborated with OEM CHL Systems to design all the processing areas, but one challenge remained: how to lay out their empty box-handling system. This application needed to accommodate large temperature swings, tolerate daily wet cleaning, and reliably deliver empty boxes to more than 30 elevated packing stations at the right time, volume, and rate. Bell & Evans wanted the entire system automated so that no time or product was lost to the unnecessary manual labor of transporting boxes around the plant.

Intralox Execution

Having previously worked with Intralox on empty box–conveyance projects, CHL brought us into the conversation as soon as they’d drafted a preliminary design. Over several months of collaboration with our trusted partner, we identified a system that—though larger—would run more efficiently. Intralox presented the Bell & Evans team with a full system animation illustrating boxes moving through the application at various speeds, showing them exactly how it would perform.

Bell & Evans agreed with the recommendation and installed a combination of Intralox Active Integrated Motion (AIM) equipment, Dual-Stacked Angled Roller Belt (DARB) Sorters and Switches, and Activated Roller Belt (ARB) Passive Transfers. Compared to a traditional box-diversion system reliant on divert arms or pushers, this system’s AIM technology offers a more reliable, robust, and flexible solution for all box-to-delivery points throughout the plant. This ensures boxes are where they need to be, when they need to be there. The Intralox system is also more efficient: It can move boxes and crates to any packing station in Bell & Evans’s 411,500-sq-ft (38,230-sq-m) plant in two minutes or less—much faster than the original layout required.

See how Intralox helped Bell & Evans optimize its plant layout (Video)


Implementation of the Intralox solution and plant startup went remarkably smoothly. The new facility reached 83% efficiency in its first week and has been operating at more than 98% efficiency for the two years since. The empty box–handling system also enabled Bell & Evans to reassign 10 full-time equivalent (FTE) positions and eliminated product waste due to cleaning-related water damage. With this innovative design and best-in-class equipment in place, Bell & Evans’s new facility was awarded 2022 Plant of the Year by Food Engineering.