Tyson Announces Iowa Plant Closure

Tyson Foods, whose motto is “Winning together by focusing on the consumer,” recently announced the firing of 1,276 workers at a pork plant in Iowa.

According to the Des Moines Register, the unexpected news will significantly impact Perry, which has a population of just 8,146. The Register’s headline read, “Can Perry recover?”

Perry Mayor Dirk Cavanaugh said, “It’s a big blow to the community. [The plant is] our largest employer in the area. It’s going to be tough to figure out what to do without them.”

Tyson’s unexpected statement came amid reports that the 90-year-old food company will be hiring illegal immigrants to staff sites in other states.

Scripps News reported that Tyson “wants to hire 52,000 asylum seekers for factory jobs.”

The food conglomerate has reportedly allocated $1.5 million annually to make legal aid and other services available to the new illegal immigrant workers that they hire.

Support services will include housing, childcare, transportation, relocation stipends, and paid time off to participate in immigration court hearings, according to BizPac Review.

Tyson disputed the company’s intent to hire illegal immigrants and released a statement affirming that all employees are “required to be legally authorized to work in this country.”

A Tyson spokesperson, however, acknowledged the plant closure in an interview with Fox News, saying, “After careful consideration, we have made the difficult decision to permanently close our Perry pork plant.”

The spokesperson added that the decision to close the plant “emphasizes our focus to optimize the efficiency of our operations to best serve our customers.”

Mayor Cavanaugh told Reuters the food processing plant will close on June 28.

Scrpps has retracted their report regarding Tyson’s plan to hire 52,000 migrants, but not before almost 160,000 viewers saw a profile of the story by news correspondent Stephanie Angleson on X.

Local KCCI News reported that “employees were completely blindsided by the news of the plant closure. The announcement letter from the Tyson corporate office noted the company was exceeding Worker Adjustment and Retaining Notification (WARN) Act stipulations which require organizations to provide employees with a 60-day notice.”

CFO John Tyson told Fox Business the company employs nearly 140,000 workers and reported $1.52 billion in quarterly sales in 2023. Tyson attributed the $68 million quarterly profit report to “improved spreads driven by lower hog cost, as well as better execution.”

Regarding the Illinois plant closure, the CFO affirmed a statement released by a company spokesperson: “Taking care of our team members is our top priority and we encourage them to apply for other open roles within the company. We are also working closely with state and local officials to provide additional resources to those who are impacted.”