COPY-Ark. gov. says buyers eyeing Pilgrim's Pride plant

Associated Press - March 4, 2009 10:44 AM ET

EL DORADO, Ark. (AP) - Governor Beebe says a group of buyers has offered to purchase a Pilgrim's Pride plant in El Dorado that is slated to close in May, although the Texas-based poultry company has not responded to the offer.

Beebe spoked to a group of 250 workers and community members last night in El Dorado, cautioning them that it could be an "uphill battle" to make the sale. But the governor said those interested in purchasing the plant had experience in the business. He said the group was affected by a plan by Pilgrim's Pride to shut down operations at 3 of its 32 chicken plants and cut 3,000 jobs.

Ray Atkinson, a spokesman for the Pittsburgh, Texas-based company, declined to comment on the governor's remarks.

Beebe declined to offer any specific details about the group, other than to say they had been working on their offer for about five months.

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