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Sanderson Farms Celebrates 70 Years

Sanderson Brothers Seed and Feed Store, 1951

Each year, over 2 million U.S. jobs are outsourced to other countries. Outsourcing has become a common trend in the poultry industry— in fact, two of the nation’s largest poultry producers have operations in Mexico, Brazil, and China. Sanderson Farms is committed to keeping its operations, and the jobs they provide, in America.

Today, seven decades after it was founded, the company is still based in the Sanderson family’s hometown of Laurel, Mississippi. “Sanderson Farms is proud of its roots in the American South,” said Joe Frank Sanderson, Jr., chairman and chief executive officer. “We are the only Fortune 1000 Company headquartered in Mississippi, and we have no plans of ever leaving.”

Sanderson Farms chicken is hatched, raised, and harvested in the United States. From the farm to the grocery store, growers and facilities across the South in Mississippi, Louisiana, Georgia, Texas, and North Carolina, make it possible for 11.9 million Sanderson Farms chickens to be processed each week.

The company’s excellent logistics team and strategic plant placement means that most Sanderson Farms chicken was packaged and delivered for retailer and wholesale distribution within 24 hours of being processed. “All of Sanderson Farms’ chickens are raised, harvested and packaged in the United States,” said Lampkin Butts, president and COO of Sanderson Farms. “When you see Sanderson Farms chicken, you can rest assured it has never left the United States nor was it imported from another country. We do regularly export our products to over 50 countries across the world, but those products are sold and consumed outside of the U.S. We feel it is our responsibility to go above and beyond USDA standards to guarantee freshness and safety.”

Currently, the company employs over 14,000 people across 5 states and 14 communities and also contracts with over 900 family farmers. Sanderson Farms has demonstrated its commitment to protecting American jobs through its three-step hiring process, which includes use of a thorough online system that determines if applicants are eligible for U.S. employment. Additionally, the company provides its hiring offices with advanced training for identifying fraudulent immigration documentation.

U.S. Commerce Department data shows that multinational companies, which account for one out of every five U.S. private-sector jobs, have reduced their U.S. employment by 875,000 from 1999 through 2012 while adding 4.2 million jobs abroad. Unlike these companies, Sanderson Farms has demonstrated its commitment to keeping and creating new jobs in America.

Rather than relying on acquisition, Sanderson Farms has chosen to expand by building new, state-of-the-art facilities. Sanderson Farms’ newest project is a $200 million facility in Tyler, Texas, which will bring 1,700 new jobs to East Texas and have an estimated $1.4 billion economic impact over 10 years.

When Sanderson Farms enters a community, the company often becomes one of the area’s main providers of employment. “Sanderson Farms employs people from a diverse range of backgrounds and skill sets,” said Mike Cockrell, Sanderson Farms’ treasurer and CFO. “We’re pleased to provide our employees with competitive compensation as well as health, wellness, and financial planning benefits.”

Years of commitment to the all-American values of hard work, honesty, and integrity have grown the family business, Sanderson Farms, into the country’s third largest poultry producer.

“Sanderson Farms has risen to its rank in the American poultry industry because of our leaders, employees, and the communities that support us,” said Joe Frank Sanderson, Jr. “Our story is proof that the American Dream is alive and well, and that with hard work and determination, great growth is possible.”

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