Published: 13/02/2017

The U.S. meat giant Tyson has acknowledged that the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is investigating its chicken pricing practices following allegations that the company conspired for years with its competitors, including Pilgrim’s Pride(JBS) and Sanderson Farms, to keep prices artificially high through buying each other’s products and shipping excess breeding stock to Mexico.

The big three companies have rejected the accusations and plan to fight the charges. Tyson CEO Tom Hayes commented, “we’re anxious to defend ourselves in Court and feel we have a great story to tell.”

If shareholders have benefited from price fixing, chicken producers and consumers will be concerned that the ‘great story’ of an increase in profit from $1.15 to $1.59 per share for the year ended 31 December 2016, has been delivered at their expense.