Laurel, Mississippi-based Sanderson Farms Inc. provided an update Aug. 30 on the company’s operations and the impact of Hurricane Ida on its locations in Louisiana and Mississippi.
“We are thankful that we have not had any reports of injuries to any of our employees as a result of this devastating hurricane,” said Joe F. Sanderson Jr., chairman and CEO of Sanderson Farms. “We have experience managing through catastrophic weather events, and we were prepared to respond to Hurricane Ida and do all we can to protect our assets. Our top priority has been and will continue to be the safety of our employees, contractors and independent contract producers and the health and well-being of the animals under our care.
“All of our facilities have power except for Hammond, Louisiana, and the feed mill and hatchery in McComb, Mississippi. Those facilities will operate on generator power until utilities are restored. Fortunately, none of our facilities have experienced any significant structural damage. Our operations in Hammond, as well as all our Mississippi locations, will not operate today, but we expect to resume production in Laurel, Collins, Hazlehurst and Jackson, Mississippi, tomorrow. The widespread power outages are creating challenges for our employees in Hammond and McComb, but we hope these locations will be back in operation later this week. We also expect to operate over the holiday weekend, including Monday, to catch up on lost production.
“We are pleased to report no significant bird loss and currently have 650 broiler houses, 17 pullet houses and 48 breeder houses operating on generator power. In anticipation of the storm and resulting power outages, we topped off feed bins and fuel tanks, tested generators and prepared farms before the storm hit to ensure our growers have adequate supplies of feed and fuel to care for flocks until power is restored.
“Hurricane Ida was a storm of historic proportions, and we are deeply saddened by the extreme devastation and losses that have occurred. We are grateful for the support from local authorities and the heroic work of first responders who are dealing with the aftermath of the storm as conditions allow. We will continue to help those displaced by the storm, including providing ice and food to the affected areas when it is safe to do so,” Sanderson said.
Sanderson Farms Inc. is engaged in the production, processing, marketing and distribution of fresh, frozen and minimally prepared chicken.