Current Cattle Market Daily Headlines for Thursday October 8, 2020

by | Oct 8, 2020 | 0 comments

Tyson targeted in new suit alleging lax plant measures during pandemic

  • Tyson Foods Inc. has again found itself in another lawsuit. The family of a worker at a plant in Columbus Junction, Iowa who died in April because of Covid-19 is now alleging that Tyson failed to protect their employees.
  • Pedro Cano’s family claims that Tyson did not provide adequate guidance regarding the threat of Covid-19 as workers continued to work elbow to elbow throughout the pandemic.
  • According to the lawsuit, no distancing measures, appropriate screening, cleaning, sanitizing or disinfecting practices were implemented at the plant while workers continued to test positive for the virus.
    • The plant did eventually close after 522 workers tested positive in early May.
  • The plaintiffs are asking for a jury trial and compensation for their losses and appropriate, unspecified damages.
  • According to a Tyson spokesman, the company has implemented numerous safety measures that meet or exceed federal guidelines for preventing the spread of coronavirus.


U.S. government indict six more chicken executives over alleged price fixing

  • The U.S. government has indicted six more chicken industry executives over alleged price fixing. This indictment expands antitrust prosecutions in the $65 billion poultry sector.
  • Among the six is former Pilgrim’s Pride CEO William Lovette. This comes months after the DOJ indicted Pilgrim’s Pride Chief Executive Jayson Penn and three others in its first charges in the criminal probe involving broiler chickens.
  • Court documents show that the industry executives conspired to fix chicken prices from 2012 through 2019.
  • Sales executive at Perdue Farms, Timothy Mulrenin was also indicted earlier this week.
  • These indictments come after grocers, retailers and consumers filed a lawsuit accusing Pilgrim’s Pride, Tyson and other poultry processors of conspiring to inflate prices for broiler chickens. All companies have denied these allegations.
    • However, Tyson Foods has been cooperating with the DOJ in its investigation into price fixing of broiler chickens as a part of an application for corporate leniency.


New plant-based burger line competes with traditional beef

  • Before the Butcher is releasing a new line of plant-based burgers that will compete with beef on taste and price.
  • The new line of quarter-pound patties will be named “Mainstream” and will sell in packages of eight at $10.99, which equates to $5.50/lb., according to a report from Super Market Perimeter.
    • This low price puts the Mainstream patties below the price point of Beyond Meat and Impossible, and right alongside traditional beef.
  • The 100 percent plant-based patty contains 18 grams of plant-based protein, are expected to hit grocery stores by the end of the year.
    • Ingredients include soy flour, isolated soy protein, both beet juice and beet juice powder and various other ingredients.


Boxed beef prices

  • Choice boxed beef: $216.88 (+0.64)
  • Select boxed beef: $205.58 (-1.26)


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How did we get here?

From the Holcomb Tyson fire to COVID-19;
Click to see a timeline of events that have brought to light the profit and pricing disparity in cattle markets.


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