Tyson Foods has announced that it is closing its processing, broiler, and hatching operations in Glen Allen, Va., and a plant in Van Buren, Ark., as of May 12, to streamline its U.S. poultry business. As a result, 692 employees at the Glen Allen site and 969 employees in Van Buren are being laid off. The employees are being encouraged to apply for open positions at other Tyson plants.
In addition to its streamlining efforts, Tyson cites operating inefficiencies that were, at least in part, responsible for the company’s underperformance in its fiscal first quarter, as another factor for the closures.
“While the decision was not easy, it reflects our broader strategy to strengthen our poultry business by optimizing operations and utilizing full available capacity at each plant,” Tyson said in a statement to CNBC.
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The closure decision “[reflects] our broader strategy to strengthen our poultry business by optimizing operations and utilizing the full available capacity at each plant,” a Tyson Foods spokesperson told CNN in an email on Tuesday. The scale of the facilities as well as an “inability to economically improve operations has led to the difficult decision to close the facilities,” according to the spokesperson.
During a February analyst call, Tyson CEO Donnie King said, “Demand didn’t appear in the parts of the market where we had expected. As a result, we had to move things around.
“As we think about moving forward, efficiency in our operations in our company will be the focal point for us,” King added.