A PYMNTS Company

Chicken Producer’s Sanderson Farms Completes $4.5-Billion Sale

 |  July 28, 2022

Days after Mississippi’s largest company, Laurel-based poultry processor Sanderson Farms, finalized its $4.5-billion sale to an out-of-state competitor, it agreed to pay its part of millions of dollars in restitution to workers for its alleged role in a scheme to suppress wages. 

The U.S. Department of Justice filed a lawsuit this week that outlined decades of communications and data sharing between the poultry industry’s largest players, including Sanderson and its new owner, accusing the companies of working together to keep wages and benefits from being competitive. 

“Through a brazen scheme to exchange wage and benefit information, these poultry processors stifled competition and harmed a generation of plant workers who face demanding and sometimes dangerous conditions to earn a living,” Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Doha Mekki of the Justice Department’s Antitrust Division said in a statement. 

Cargill Inc., Sanderson Farms Inc., and Wayne Farms signed an agreement with the Justice Department to pay $84.8 million in restitution to workers to resolve the lawsuit. 

Want more news? Subscribe to CPI’s free daily newsletter for more headlines and updates on antitrust developments around the world.