With nearly 4,000 poultry farms in Georgia – including processing plants, feed mills, hatcheries and delivery systems – the industry generates about $28 billion per year.
Four major poultry processing companies have set up shop in Georgia, to be close to the high volume of birds raised in the Southeast and the available ports for exported products. And these processors have created a large number of jobs for Georgians.
This company was founded in the hills of northeastern Georgia more than 50 years ago. Today, Springer Mountain Farms remains family-owned, even while it employs 4,200 people. Headquartered in Baldwin, it has processing plants in Gainesville and Cornelia.
Victory Foods, along with its sister company Prime Pak, employs 900 people at its poultry-sizing and de-boning facility in Gainesville.
Although it’s headquartered in Greeley, Colo., Pilgrim’s Pride has six processing facilities and one prepared foods operation in Georgia, with locations in Athens, Canton, Carrolton, Douglas, Elberton, Ellijay and Gainesville. The company employs 38,000 people throughout the U.S., Mexico and Puerto Rico. Its net sales in the 2012 fiscal year totaled more than $8 billion.
Considered an egg-to-market operation, Claxton Poultry has been producing chicken since 1949. The family-owned company operates a processing plant in Claxton, a feed mill and two hatcheries in Glennville, and a distribution center in Savannah. In total, the company employs 1,800 Georgians and sells 300 million pounds of chicken each year.