Pilgrim's Pride Announces Restructuring

PITTSBURG, Texas - Pilgrim's Pride Corp., the nation's No. 2 poultry producer, today announced plans to restructure its turkey operations and sell or close its Hinton, Virginia, plant, which employs 1,300 people and processes about 160,000 turkeys per week.

The Pittsburg, Texas-based company made the announcement as it reported higher quarterly earnings, helped by last year's purchase of ConAgra Foods' poultry unit and higher chicken prices.

Pilgrim's Pride said it expects charges and other losses from the restructured operations to be as much as $46 million after taxes, or 69 cents per share, in the second half.

The company said the restructuring would add $25 million to $30 million a year to pretax earnings.

The turkey unit is expected to have an operating loss of $3 million to $8 million, excluding restructuring activities, in the second half of 2004 and to be profitable in 2005, the company said.
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