Pilgrim’s Pride earmarks US$450m investments to support profit growth

The investments are intended to “generate stronger, more consistent sales growth and margin expansion”.


By Simon Harvey, Just Food

August 3, 2022


Pilgrim’s Pride, the US poultry and prepared-foods business majority-owned by Brazil’s JBS, plans to spend US$450m on capex projects over the next three years.


The investments will focus on the US, taking in an expansion of Pilgrim’s small bird facility in Athens, Georgia, along with the construction of a “protein conversion” plant for pet foods in the same state. The Nasdaq-listed firm also plans to build a prepared-foods factory to support growth in its Just Bare value-added chicken brand.


Colorado-based Pilgrim’s inherited the Just Bare line in 2016 when it acquired GNP Company, along with production facilities in Cold Spring and Luverne in Minnesota, as well as Arcadia in Wisconsin. The business, in which meat giant JBS holds 80%, has since gone on to expand in M&A, particularly in Ireland and the UK.


“Given our market momentum and focus on profitable growth, we are announcing a number of new investments in the US,” Pilgrim’s said in its second-quarter results announcement last week, adding the funding will include “operational excellence improvements via automation”.


Pilgrim’s did not provide a precise location for the new prepared-foods plant, other than to say it will be located in “south-east USA to cultivate our branded growth, further diversifying our portfolio”.


It added:


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