Company says closures in Virginia and Arkansas part of streamlining process.

Krissa Welshans, Livestock Editor

March 14, 2023

2 Min Read
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Tyson Foods

Tyson Foods announced this week that it has made the difficult decision to close poultry facilities in Glen Allen, Virginia, and Van Buren, Arkansas. A company spokesperson said “the current scale and inability to economically improve operations” led to the decision.

The closure of a processing, broiler and hatching operation at Glen Allen, Virginia, and the Van Buren, Arkansas, plant will be effective May 12, 2023. Demand will be shifted to other Tyson Foods facilities.

“While the decision was not easy, it reflects our broader strategy to strengthen our poultry business by optimizing operations and utilizing the full available capacity at each plant,” the company said of both closures, which will affect close to 1,700 employees.

It further added: “As always, our team members remain our top priority. We are working directly with impacted team members to help ensure they have the option to apply for open positions and relocation assistance where applicable to other Tyson Foods facilities.”

State and local resources and assistance are being offered to individuals who choose to stay at each location.

Mark Federici, president of the United Food & Commercial Workers Local 400 Union, said he was deeply disappointed in the news “and the terrible impact” it will have on its union members.

“These men and women risked their lives and the safety of their families to keep this plant operational during the pandemic, and this is the thanks they get? This is not how we show gratitude to essential workers in Virginia,” he stated, adding that the union will do everything in its power to help.

He continued: “To make matters worse, Tyson Foods has received untold sums of taxpayer dollars to open a new facility in Pittsylvania County, [Virginia], after promising to provide 400 jobs. But with at least 700 jobs eliminated by the closure of the Glen Allen plant, Tyson Foods will continue to reap the lavish benefits of taxpayer dollars while Virginia will have 300 fewer jobs. What a disgraceful waste.”

About the Author(s)

Krissa Welshans

Livestock Editor

Krissa Welshans grew up on a crop farm and cow-calf operation in Marlette, Michigan. Welshans earned a bachelor’s degree in animal science from Michigan State University and master’s degree in public policy from New England College. She and her husband Brock run a show cattle operation in Henrietta, Texas, where they reside with their son, Wynn.

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