Wednesday, May 12, 2021

These roosters have little to crow about


Tyson Foods Inc. is replacing roosters in its hatching egg facilities because of low fertility rates.

The issue is serious enough to reduce Tyson’s chicken supplies and earnings.

The company began to notice declining hatch rates in January, officials told investors and stock market analysts during a recent call to discuss earnings.

Another challenge was electricity outages during a severe winter storm in February.

The rooster replacements are expected to be completed by fall, with the full impact of the changes seen by mid-2022, said Donnie King, Tyson chief operating officer and poultry group president.

Tyson has purchased more chicken from other companies in the most recent quarter than it usually does in an effort to offset the lower hatch rates amid a recent surge in customer demand for chicken breasts and wings. 

“We are too dependent on the outside purchase of meat right now, so we need to get our own animals in place,” King said.