ConAgra Selling Chicken Business

June 9, 2003
Posted at: 6:12 p.m. CDT

OMAHA, Neb. -- ConAgra Foods has agreed to sell its chicken processing operations to poultry products supplier Pilgrim's Pride.

Pilgrim's Pride has agreed to pay $590 million in cash and securities. It will become the second-largest chicken company behind Springdale-based Tyson Foods.

Omaha-based ConAgra is getting out of the meatpacking business. It's chicken-processing operations have reported weak markets and lower volumes in recent years.

ConAgra has been emphasizing its grocery store brand names, including Healthy Choice frozen and packaged foods, over its meatpacking and other commodity businesses for some time.

Both companies expect the transaction to be completed this summer. A majority of Pittsburg, Texas-based Pilgrim's Pride stockholders have agreed to vote in favor of the transaction.

ConAgra runs packing facilities in Batesville, El Dorado and Clinton.

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