News & Updates

  • Butterball executive retires, new VP of live operations named
    GARNER, N.C. — Officials at Butterball LLC recently announced that Walter (Gator) Pelletier, vice president of live operations, retired at the end of 2023. Vernon Felts, who most recently held the role of senior director of live operations, immediately assumed Pelletier’s vacancy. Pelletier will remain a member of Butterball’s board of directors as a Goldsboro Milling Co. representative. Pelletier joined Butterball in October 2006 when Maxwell Farms LLC acquired Butterball. He was responsible for all of North Carolina’s turkey growing operations until 2015, when we became head of Butterball’s live operations nationwide. “Without a doubt, I’ll miss spending time daily with the leadership team (at Butterball) and the entire live operations team,” Pelletier said. “They are great people to work with! However, I’ll enjoy getting to spend more time with our seven grandkids and additional time traveling with my wife and family.” Felts, who worked with Pelletier at Maxwell Farms, also joined Butterball in the 2006 acquisition. His longevity with the company and lengthy career in nutrition and farm management uniquely qualified him to for the vice president of live operations role. Felts sits on the Agricultural Advisory Board at University of Mount Olive in North Carolina, serves ... read more
    Published on 2024-02-23By Staff Author
  • Laurie Pate elected new chair of NPFDA
    ATLANTA — The National Protein and Food Distributors Association Board of Directors recently convened in Atlanta, Ga., to tap officers and welcome newly elected board members. Laurie Pate, president at Foodlinx, in Brentwood, Calif., assumes the position of NPFDA chair, succeeding Jud Guest, executive vice president at LAD Truck Lines Inc., in Watkinsville, Ga. Chan Windham, vice president of sales at House of Raeford in Greenville, S.C. transitions to the role of vice chair after previously serving as treasurer. Greg Morgan, senior poultry category manager, Quirch Foods in Miami, Fla., has been elected to serve as treasurer on the NPFDA Executive Committee. Guest will remain on the board as immediate past chair. As chair, Pate will lead the board of directors, which is responsible for establishing policy and providing guidance for NPFDA’s overall mission. NPFDA is governed by an Executive Committee and Board of Directors comprised of industry professionals from across the country who represent protein companies, distributors, processing companies, and other related industries, the associated added. The board oversees the organization’s direction and works directly with the staff to facilitate its continued growth. Returning board members include: Barry Moose. Koch Foods; Mitch Mitchell, Holmes Foods; Kevin Grindle, Mar-Jac Poultry; ... read more
    Published on 2024-02-23By Staff Author
  • NPFDA awards Paschall its 2024 ‘Member of the Year’
    ATLANTA — The National Protein and Food Distributors Association awarded Jeff Paschall, vice president of sales and marketing with Fieldale Farms, with its Member of the Year award during its recent Annual Protein Convention & Showcase in Atlanta, Ga. NPFDA noted that Paschall is a man of many talents. In high school, while others became involved in sports, he was working on the family farm. He was very involved in the Future Farmers of America and won several awards. With a bachelor’s degree from Murray State University and experience in the chicken industry, he has proven himself a valuable asset to Fieldale Farms for more than 30 years, the associated added. Beyond his professional success, Paschall is a dedicated father and coach to his three daughters and actively participates in his community and church, NPFDA said, adding that his commitment to the association has been recognized by his peers, making him an exceptional choice for the Member of the Year award. Fieldale Farms President Tom Hensley commended Paschall for his outstanding achievements and recognizes him as the ideal candidate for the Member of the Year title. “Jeff has been our Most Valuable Player for years. He is a man ... read more
    Published on 2024-02-22By Staff Author
  • Delaware family farm wins national environmental award
    ATLANTA — L & J Farm of Harrington, Del., was one of five farms across the United States to receive USPOULTRY’s Family Farm Environmental Excellence Award during the 2024 International Production & Processing Expo in Atlanta, Ga. The family farm’s owners, Linda and John Brown, were in Atlanta to receive the award, having been nominated for the honor by Delmarva Chicken Association. USPOULTRY sponsors the annual awards in recognition of exemplary environmental stewardship by family farmers engaged in poultry and egg production. The Browns raise 150,000 organic broiler chickens per flock for Perdue Farms, and theirs was the first commercial organic farm on Delmarva. They have opened their doors to many people over the years, including professionals, CEOs, farm suppliers, buyers, schools and more. L & J Farm makes use of an EcoDrum composter and was the first farm in Delaware to take advantage of the USDA cost share program for this equipment. Litter is primarily windrowed, with partial and complete cleanouts when necessary. They test their litter annually, and all litter removed from the farm is used for offsite cropland. Linda is an officer on the Tax Ditch Committee, part of the network of drainage ditches on Delmarva that ... read more
    Published on 2024-02-22By Staff Author
  • Jim Perdue awarded NPFDA ‘Lifetime Achievement’ award
    ATLANTA — During its recent Annual Protein Convention & Showcase in Atlanta, Ga., the National Protein and Food Distributors Association presented Jim Perdue, chairman of Perdue Farms, with its Protein Industry Lifetime Achievement Award. Perdue is a third-generation leader of the privately held Perdue Farms, based in Salisbury, Md. He grew up in the family business and learned the importance of customer satisfaction and quality products, the association noted. After obtaining a master’s degree and a doctorate, Perdue returned to the company in 1983 and worked his way up the ranks. He became chairman and CEO in 1991. Under his leadership, the company expanded its portfolio of premium protein brands and became a leader in workplace safety and employee health, NPFDA said, adding that, Perdue Farms also became the first major poultry company to move all its chicken to no-antibiotics ever protocols and is an industry leader in animal welfare with its Commitments to Animal Care initiatives. Perdue is also actively involved in community organizations and serves on the board of the Oyster Recovery Partnership, a nonprofit expert in Chesapeake Bay oyster restoration. As chairman, Perdue ensures that the company remains true to its values of quality, integrity, teamwork, and ... read more
    Published on 2024-02-22By Staff Author
  • USPOULTRY’s Feed Mill Management Seminar to focus on effective mill management
    TUCKER, Ga. — Feed manufacturing is one of the most important areas in poultry and egg production and processing. As feed mill management challenges get more complex from year to year, the costs continue to increase. The U.S. Poultry & Egg Association 2024 Feed Mill Management Seminar is a valuable source for staying abreast of the latest technology and techniques to keep your mill running efficiently and effectively. The seminar will be held March 7-8 at the Embassy Suites by Hilton Downtown in Nashville, Tenn. “This year’s program planning committee has developed a well-rounded agenda that has something for everyone involved in poultry feed production,” Darrin Poole, corporate feed mill QA manager, Wayne-Sanderson Farms, and program committee chair, said. “This year’s program has topics that range from technical operations and inventory management to energy cost savings and trucking mandates, and much more.” Program topics will include a Regulatory and FSMA Update; Elevator Belt and Bucket Selection; Die Specs for Production; OSHA / DOL / NFPA Update; Inventory Management; Transportation: Feed Trucking Industry Challenges and Sanitary Transportation Rule and Tractor Specs / New Mandates; Boiler Operation; Feed Mill Biosecurity; a New Mill Virtual Tour; Feed Mill Cost Savings: Energy ... read more
    Published on 2024-02-21By Staff Author
  • IPPE 2024 set new records
    ATLANTA — The 2024 International Production & Processing Expo had a terrific year with 1,432 exhibitors covering 620,850 square feet of exhibit space, setting two new records. IPPE is the world’s largest annual feed, meat, and poultry and egg industry event of its kind and is one of the 25 largest trade shows in the United States. IPPE is sponsored by the U.S. Poultry & Egg Association, American Feed Industry Association, and the Meat Institute. The 2024 IPPE had 31,353 registered attendees from the poultry and egg, meat and animal food industries. There were 9,063 international visitors, a third new record, from 133 countries represented at IPPE. The largest group from a single country outside the U.S. was Canada, with 14.9 percent of registered attendees. As in previous years, Latin America had the strongest international presence, representing 45 percent of international visitors. “We are very pleased and excited about our strong attendance numbers and this year’s record-breaking trade show floor,” the organizations noted. “The turnout for the 2024 IPPE was outstanding, and the feedback from attendees has been extremely positive regarding time spent on the trade show floor, education sessions offered and opportunities to connect with colleagues and vendors. ... read more
    Published on 2024-02-20By Staff Author
  • Taco Bell offerings its new Cheesy Chicken Crispanada
    IRVINE, Calif. — Taco Bell is now offering its new Cheesy Chicken Crispanada. The brand’s take on the iconic empanada hit locations nationwide for a limited time starting Feb. 15, bringing with it a fusion of craveable flavors, the company notes. Taco Bell’s commitment to push the boundaries of food creativity and innovation is grounded in its fusion-first ethos, creating a synergy where beloved flavors and forms come together to produce something entirely new, the company said, adding that the Cheesy Chicken Crispanada is a testament to Taco Bell’s collaborative creativity, featuring up-leveled ingredients, unique new formats and unexpected flavors that modernize the menu while celebrating the Mexican-inspired roots that have long been at the heart of Taco Bell. Taco Bell’s Cheesy Chicken Crispanada underwent testing in Tennessee in early 2023, sparking excitement among fans and leading to its nationwide debut, the company added. Announced at Taco Bell’s inaugural Live Más LIVE event in Las Vegas, the Cheesy Chicken Crispanada kicked off a full year of innovation to come, Taco Bell announced. Encased within a crispy, golden shell bursting with vibrant Mexican-inspired flavors, including a blend of tender and seasoned chicken and a melty infusion of rich, gooey cheese. For ... read more
    Published on 2024-02-20By Staff Author
  • Popeyes to launch in Italy
    TORONTO — The Popeyes® brand and Restaurant Brands Iberia (RB Iberia), the parent of the master franchisees for Burger King® Spain, Burger King Portugal, Popeyes® Spain, and Tim Hortons® Spain, are announcing entry into a master franchise and development agreement to develop and grow the Popeyes brand in Italy. Founded in New Orleans in 1972, Popeyes has more than 50 years of history and culinary tradition incorporating Cajun and Creole flavor profiles. Popeyes distinguishes itself with a unique New Orleans-style menu developed by an in-house team of professionally trained chefs featuring the brand’s signature chicken sandwich, spicy chicken, chicken tenders, fried shrimp, and other regional items. Popeyes famous chicken is freshly prepared, marinated for at least 12 hours, battered, and breaded by hand using its seasonings and slow cooked. “We’re very excited about growing the brand in Italy with RB Iberia, a long-term partner and strong operator,” said David Shear, president of International, Restaurant Brands International, parent company of Popeyes. “We have set ambitious expansion plans for our iconic brand, and today’s news highlights our commitment to serving Popeyes bold Louisiana flavors to more guests around the world.” Chicken lovers in Italy can soon look forward to getting ... read more
    Published on 2024-02-19By Staff Author
  • Alltech announces new roles to support its global agriculture solutions and services
    LEXINGTON, Ky. — During the past 15 years, Alltech has grown its portfolio significantly, the company announces, adding that, from soil health to solutions for sustainable animal production, the company has an unparallelled global offering of technologies and services to support its customers worldwide with efficient, profitable and sustainable agriculture. To reflect this growth in its customer offering, Alltech has formed a new team, the Technology Group. This team will be responsible for Alltech’s nutritional technologies, services, and technical support. Its focus will be on providing customers with the Alltech advantage, drawing upon the company’s diverse range of solutions and services to offer customized support. To lead the Technology Group, Alltech has appointed: · Nick Adams (UK), commercial director. Adams has worked with Alltech for 24 years, most recently as global director of the Alltech Mycotoxin Management platform. · Dr. Jules Taylor-Pickard (UK), technical director. Taylor-Pickard has worked with Alltech for 22 years and previously served as global director of the Alltech Gut Health platform. · Martin Minchin (UK), commercial marketing director. Minchin previously served as global marketing manager of the Alltech Mycotoxin Management platform. He has been with Alltech for nearly seven years. Other recent Alltech appointments include: · ... read more
    Published on 2024-02-19By Staff Author
  • ISA: Illinois tops U.S. soybean production for 2023
    BLOOMINGTON, Ill. — Illinois farmers once again led the nation in total soybean production for the 2023 growing season, the Illinois Soybean Association announces. The USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service estimates Illinois soybean farmers raised 648.9 million bushels on 10.3 million acres. Compared to 2022, total acreage and yield estimates were both down 4 percent in Illinois. Average soybean yields remained the same in 2023 at 63 bushels per acre. “I would like to congratulate my fellow 43,000 soybean farmers on another successful growing season. Despite challenges such as heavy, early season rains in some areas and extremely dry conditions in other areas of the state, Illinois farmers made smart management decisions to maintain average soybean yields statewide,” said Ron Kindred, chair of the Illinois Soybean Association (ISA). “Part of this success can be attributed to the efforts of the Illinois Soybean Association. For 60 years and counting, ISA has invested in production research, education, advocacy and market development efforts to afford all Illinois soybean farmers success even in the face of challenges beyond our control.” As the 60th anniversary of the Illinois Soybean Association is celebrated this year, Kindred is quick to point out that the checkoff ... read more
    Published on 2024-02-16By Guest Author
  • Training for 100 meat companies to measure emissions and set climate targets
    WASHINGTON — Up to 100 of America’s leading meat companies will have the opportunity to complete climate training programs offered by Supplier Leadership on Climate Transition (Supplier LOCT), following a $65,000 investment by the Meat Institute to kickstart the partnership and enable members to participate in training focused on setting science-based targets for reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Supplier LOCT is a collaborative program launched in 2021 to accelerate climate progress across supply chains. The Meat Institute’s investment supports its target for 100 percent of members to set science-based emissions reduction targets by 2030, subsidizing Supplier LOCT participation for up to 100 Meat Institute members in 2024. Interested Meat Institute members must register no later than March 15 at Registration is capped to the first 100 registered companies and each company may have up to five staff members participate. “Achieving our ambitious Protein PACT targets requires long-term commitment plus short-term practical action, including to fill technical gaps and build capabilities,” Meat Institute President and CEO Julie Anna Potts said. “That’s why the Meat Institute is honored to partner with Supplier LOCT and excited to facilitate this critical education opportunity that will help meat companies measure emissions and set ... read more
    Published on 2024-02-16By Guest Author
  • Ramirez named interim director of Egg Industry Center at Iowa State
    AMES, Iowa — Brett Ramirez has been appointed interim director of the Egg Industry Center at Iowa State University. Ramirez has served as the center’s assistant director since April 2023, leading alongside former EIC director Richard Gates, who passed away in November 2023. Ramirez, who joined Iowa State’s faculty in 2018, is also an associate professor with research and Extension appointments in Iowa State’s Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering. “Brett has made tremendous impacts within the poultry and livestock industries in his professional career,” said Daniel J. Robison, endowed dean’s chair of Iowa State University’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. “I am confident he will successfully lead the Egg Industry Center in building upon its programs to help North American egg producers continue to provide this wonderful food source.” Ramirez’s research spans several areas critical to the egg industry, including livestock housing and ventilation systems, environmental control, natural resource and energy efficiencies and precision livestock farming. Through his extension appointment, Ramirez collaborates with industry members to address engineering, design, management and troubleshooting of livestock and poultry facilities. He has presented many ventilation workshops aimed at production employees and allied industry members. His involvement with the Egg ... read more
    Published on 2024-02-15By Staff Author
  • AEB is looking toward an ‘egg-citing’ year
    ATLANTA — Do you want to know something “egg-citing?” This is going to be a busy, fun, and innovative year for the U.S. egg industry. In an exclusive interview during the recent International Production & Processing Expo in Atlanta, Ga., Emily Metz, president and CEO of the American Egg Board, provided an outlook and overview of many of the important initiatives that AEB will be undertaking this year to promote what is an indispensable food product – the egg. “It’s an exciting year for AEB,” Metz said. “We are four years into our strategic plan. I have been talking with a lot of our members throughout the show and I think we have laid a lot of really strong foundations, and this is the year we kind of get to go on the on-ramp and at least start to race down the highway.” One of the industry’s big promotions for the upcoming year, as well as for the previous year, is increasing U.S. egg exports around the globe. “Top of mind for me is that we really are coming off an amazing trip to Japan and South Korea and are doubling down on that effort,” she noted, adding ... read more
    Published on 2024-02-15By David Strickland
  • Animal Agriculture Alliance opens 2024 enrollment in Animal Ag Allies program
    ARLINGTON, Va. — The Animal Agriculture Alliance is seeking applicants to join the rankings of Animal Ag Allies in 2024. The Animal Ag Allies program, launched in 2020, is a development program to empower farmers, ranchers, veterinarians, and industry professionals to be outspoken advocates for agriculture online and in person. The Animal Ag Allies program provides opportunities for networking, training, and continuous development of issue expertise and communication skills. Animal Ag Allies are on the front lines of responding to emerging issues and sharing positive content about animal agriculture. Coming into 2024, more than 150 participants have completed the modules and have consistently rated the overall value and usefulness of the program and its resources as a 4.7 out of 5. The program consists of two phases: five self-paced, online training modules and a private forum to discuss engagement strategies and emerging issues. Participants will have six weeks to complete the modules and will then be invited to a private online group where they will have the ability to interact with other Allies. Program modules include: overviews of each sector of animal agriculture, hot topics and emerging issues facing animal agriculture, how to address contentious issues, growing your social following ... read more
    Published on 2024-02-14By Staff Author