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U.S. Opens Antitrust Probe on Chicken-Industry Labor Practices

March 4, 2022, 4:08 PM

The U.S. Justice Department is investigating employment practices of Pilgrim’s Pride Corp.and other chicken producers to determine whether the companies violated antitrust laws.

Pilgrim’s, the second-biggest U.S. poultry company, disclosed the civil investigation in a securities filing. Perdue Farms Inc. said it received a letter from the Justice Department, a company spokeswoman said. Perdue is the fourth-biggest U.S. chicken producer. Dow Jones reported the investigation earlier.

Pilgrim’s Pride shares fell more than 5% for the biggest decline in two weeks.

The investigation comes as the highly concentrated meat sector has been under scrutiny from the Biden administration and others ...