JBS Buys Majority Stake in Pilgrim's Pride

Brazilian beef concern JBS SA has agreed to purchase a 64 percent stake in Pilgrim's Pride, the second largest US chicken producer that had been in Chapter 11 bankruptcy due to debt and high feed costs. JBS is already a major beef and pork producer and this deal will give it entry into the U.S. poultry market. It entered the U.S. market in 2007 with its acquisition of Swift & Co. and then acquired Smithfield Beef Group in 2008. The $800 million Pilgrim's Pride deal is contingent on approval from regulators, which earlier this year sued to block JBS's bid to purchase National Beef Packing Co., a deal that was subsequently dropped.