Tyson Foods shuts Nebraska pork plant until mid-May

The closure follows a plant fire on April 23
calendar icon 1 May 2023
clock icon 2 minute read

Tyson Foods Inc does not expect to resume production until the second week of May at a Madison, Nebraska, pork plant following a weekend fire, Reuters reported, citing the meatpacker on Friday.

The closure after the April 23 fire is causing ripple effects in the Midwest as Tyson diverts pigs to other processing plants in a bid to prevent animals from backing up on farms.

The facility typically slaughters roughly 8,250 hogs a day, according to industry estimates. That is not among Tyson's biggest plants, but represents about 2% of daily US hog slaughtering.

Some pigs that would normally be slaughtered in Madison are instead being processed at a Tyson plant in Storm Lake, Iowa, farmers said. As a result, Tyson is also shifting some pigs to a plant in Waterloo, Iowa, that were initially destined for slaughter in Storm Lake, they said.

The shuffle has slightly delayed when some farmers deliver pigs to processing plants, growers said.

"Since the event and until the facility is back online, hogs have been diverted to other Tyson Foods pork facilities to mitigate disruption to our livestock producers and customers," Tyson spokesperson Liz Croston said. She did not respond to questions about the Iowa plants.

Tyson is making repairs to damaged areas of the Nebraska plant, Croston said.

The fire was "determined to be accidental in nature with an electrical cause," said Adam Matzner, chief investigator for the Nebraska State Fire Marshal.

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