Upcoming Federal Investigation into Chicken Industry

by 5m Editor
18 May 2010, at 9:45am

US - The Department of Justice and USDA are soon to start an investigation into the business relationship between broiler growers and the large poultry processors.

Production is down, prices are flat and sales contracts are smaller and tougher to come by. But is the poultry industry – Georgia's biggest agriculture business by far – suffering from anti-competitive practices by big food companies, or is it just another victim of the recession?

In an unprecedented inquiry, the US Department of Justice's Antitrust Division and the US Department of Agriculture are teaming up to try to find out, reports Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

The two agencies are about to hold a field hearing in the first step to try to discover if big chicken companies such as Perdue or Tyson Foods are hurting small farmers by imposing arduous contracts and tough price constraints.

The hearing is scheduled for 21 May in Normal, Alabama, is part of a sweeping examination of competition in the agriculture industry that the two federal agencies launched late last year.