Pilgrim's Pride to idle two facilities

by FoodBusinessNews.net Staff
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PITTSBURG, TEXAS — Pilgrim’s Pride Corp. has announced plans to idle a chicken processing plant in Clinton, Ark., and a further-processing facility in Bossier City, La. Both initiatives are expected to be completed in the next 60 days.

The company previously announced production cutbacks heading into fall, and the most recent announcement will result in a 1.25% incremental increase in previously announced production cutbacks.

Pilgrim’s Pride attributed the idling of the plants to continued imbalanced in supply and demand in the U.S. chicken industry, which has led to market prices for breast meat that are unusually weak for the summer grilling season. The company said it does not expect to incur any material financial charges related to the recent announcement.

"Over the past six months, Pilgrim’s Pride has taken a number of proactive steps to strengthen our competitive position amid a very difficult operating environment," said Clint Rivers, president and chief executive officer. "These steps include the production cutbacks for the second half of 2008, the closure of a plant in North Carolina and seven distribution centers, and the consolidation of our tray-pack operations in El Dorado, Ark., to six other case-ready sites. Those changes, when combined with today’s announcement, will result in the elimination of nearly 2,300 positions."

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