GREELEY, Colo. – According to an Oct. 24 press release, Pilgrim's Pride Corp. announced plans to close its processing plant in Luverne, Minnesota, on Dec. 29. The poultry processor, which is majority owned by JBS SA, plans to transfer production and equipment from the facility, which employs about 200 workers, to more efficient operations, “to enhance synergies and better serve the company’s customers,” a company statement said. Pilgrim’s took ownership of the 81,000 sq.-ft. plant in 2016, when it acquired GNP Co., including its Gold’n Plump and Just Bare chicken product lines, for $350 million.
“The Pilgrim’s team explored several options before arriving at the difficult decision to close the Luverne facility,” said Jayson Penn, head of Pilgrim’s USA. “We recognize the impact this has on our Luverne team, their families and the local community, and we will make every effort to assist in future job placement, including relocation opportunities at other company locations for all impacted employees.”
The plant, formerly an IBP-owned beef-processing operation, was acquired by Gold‘n Plump Poultry in 1998 and was converted to a poultry facility producing frozen and value-added chicken products. The company said the closure will not have an impact on the company’s overall production.