Study: Public had fewer fears than leaders did of meat shortages
In April 2020, when outbreaks of Covid-19 among slaughterhouse workers slowed U.S. meat production, the chairman of Tyson Foods said in full-page advertisements, "The supply chain is breaking." Two days later, President Trump signed an executive order to keep processing plants open during the pandemic. In retrospect, the meat supply chain was strained, but not broken, and production recovered quickly, said a team of economists in the journal Meat Science.
FTC probes grocery and meat supply chain and spiking prices
The two largest U.S. supermarket chains, the leading grocery wholesaler and the No. 1 chicken processor are among nine companies ordered by the Federal Trade Commission to turn over detailed information for its study of "empty shelves and sky-high prices." The commission said it would investigate the causes of supply chain disruptions and the hardships imposed on consumers. No paywall
Lawsuit charges poultry price-fixing, asks restitution
Nineteen poultry processors, including industry leader Tyson Foods, are accused of conspiring to fix chicken prices in a lawsuit filed by Washington State Attorney General Bob Ferguson. The suit asks for restitution for Washington consumers that could potentially run into the millions of dollars.
Tyson Foods sets Covid-19 vaccination deadline
The largest U.S. meat processor, Tyson Foods, said on Tuesday that all of its 139,000 employees must be fully vaccinated against the coronavirus by Nov. 1, with a proposed $200 "thank you" for to frontline workers for compliance. "We do not take this decision lightly," said chief executive Donnie King in a memo. "We have spent months encouraging our team members to get vaccinated – today under half of our team members are."
DOJ: Tyson was not directed by federal government to continue pandemic production
The federal government never instructed Tyson Foods and other meatpackers to keep their plants open during the early months of the pandemic, according to the Department of Justice in a recent filing in a federal appeals case. Experts say the brief, along with others filed in the case, is a good sign for the plaintiffs, the relatives of four Tyson workers in Waterloo, Iowa, who died of Covid-19 last spring. It is also likely to have broad implications for other Covid-related lawsuits filed by meatpacking workers around the country. (No paywall)
Tyson shareholders reject proposals on human rights, corporate transparency
At its annual meeting on Thursday, Tyson Foods shareholders rejected three proposals that would have increased investor oversight of the company's operations. Tyson also reported lower-than-expected sales in the first quarter as well as ongoing pandemic-related worker absenteeism and turnover.
Tyson faces investor pressure over handling of Covid-19 pandemic
Tyson Foods investors attending its online annual shareholder meeting this week will consider several proposals to increase oversight of the company, all of which stem from the company’s handling of the Covid-19. Thousands of Tyson workers have contracted the virus and dozens have died at plants around the country.
Tyson to pay $221.5 million to settle price fixing claims
The largest U.S. poultry producer, Tyson Foods, said on Wednesday it would pay $221.5 million to settle antitrust litigation that accuses it of price fixing in the sale of broiler chicken meat.
Big poultry processor to pay $75 million to resolve antitrust lawsuit
Three months after a plea agreement with the government that included a $110.5 million fine, Pilgrim’s Pride, the second-largest U.S. poultry processor, said on Monday it would pay $75 million to settle a class-action lawsuit by its customers. Other price-fixing claims are pending in the …
Tyson Foods fires seven in Covid betting pool
Tyson Foods said on Wednesday that it had fired seven management employees at its hog slaughter plant in Waterloo, Iowa, following allegations that plant manager Tom Hart had organized a betting pool over how many of the plant's employees would become ill with Covid-19.
Tyson orders investigation of ‘betting on Covid’ allegations
Former attorney general Eric Holder will lead an independent investigation into allegations that managers of a Tyson Foods hog plant in Waterloo, Iowa, ran a betting pool on how many employees would become ill with Covid-19, said the meat processor on Thursday.
Covid-19 cases appear to be slowing at meat plants. But companies aren’t releasing test results.
After many months of surging cases, the number of new Covid-19 infections reported at meatpacking plants appears to have slowed. Yet with limited information from the major meatpackers on new cases at their facilities, advocates say it isn’t clear whether the trend reflects a true decline.(No paywall)
Indictments could be a sign of increased antitrust enforcement in farm sector
After years of failed attempts to draw attention to market concentration in the meat sector, farmers are cautiously optimistic about federal investigations into alleged antitrust violations in the chicken and beef industries. And grand jury indictments of four chicken industry executives could be a sign of more antitrust action to come, says a former attorney at the Department of Justice. (No paywall)
Two major meat processors part of USDA’s $1.2-billion Food Box program
Two of the largest meat processors in the country, Tyson Foods and Cargill Meat Solutions, are among roughly 200 "approved suppliers" for a USDA initiative to buy surplus fresh produce, dairy products and pre-cooked chicken and pork for distribution to needy Americans. The USDA said it approved $1.2 billion in contracts for the Farmers to Families Food Box program but did not list individual awards.(No paywall)
Tyson suspends Iowa hog plant due to Covid-19
More than two dozen workers at a Tyson Foods pork plant were stricken with Covid-19, forcing the meatpacker to suspend operations at its mammoth plant in Columbus Junction in southeastern Iowa, the No. 1 hog state. Tyson Foods announced the shut-down on Monday as the coronavirus spread further …
Lawsuit alleges turkey companies conspired to keep prices high
A new class-action lawsuit brought by two food distributors alleges that the country's top turkey companies conspired for most of the past decade to raise turkey prices. The allegations mirror those brought in recent years against beef, pork, and chicken companies, and all revolve around the use of reports on industry production and pricing made by a secretive data company called Agri Stats.(No paywall)
Multiple lawsuits allege price-fixing by big beef companies
Just a few months after news broke that the nation’s top attorneys are investigating Big Chicken for alleged antitrust violations, similar allegations are piling up against Big Beef. Consumers, ranchers, and a meat distributor have now filed lawsuits alleging that the country’s biggest beef companies have broken antitrust law by conspiring to raise the price of beef and lower the amount paid to producers.
Justice Dept. intervenes in major poultry price-fixing case
The Department of Justice intervened Friday in a landmark price-fixing suit against the country’s biggest poultry companies, possibly signaling that its own grand jury investigation into the chicken sector could result in criminal indictments. The DOJ asked the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois to stop discovery in the class-action lawsuit brought by food distributor Maplevale Farm, saying in its motion that “a limited stay is needed to protect the grand jury’s investigation.”