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Fieldale to cut chicken production by 5 percent

Cost of feed is blamed for reduction

POSTED: April 15, 2008 5:00 a.m.
Fieldale Farms Corp. announced Friday it would reduce live chicken production by 5 percent, citing excess supply and the high cost of corn for feed.

The announcement was made by Gus Arrendale, the company's executive vice president.

"It's a tough decision to make, but unfortunately, the markets we sell in have not yet caught up to the rapidly rising cost of feed and it seems to be getting worse," Arrendale said.

"Not long ago feed corn cost a little over $2 a bushel," he said. "Now it's approaching $6 and some are predicting $8 a bushel this summer. With the U.S. Agriculture Department anticipating a substantial drop in planting acreage this year, further impacted by feed corn being committed to production of ethanol, prices are not likely to fall."

Fieldale's announcement follows other companies, including Pilgrims Pride, who have cut production.

Fieldale, based in Baldwin, operates Hall County plants in Gainesville and Murrayville.




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