More than 1,000 workers at another Tyson Food plant are out of work after the company announced it is permanently closing one of its Iowa facilities.

The move comes after the Arkansas-based company closed two chicken plants and announced job cuts last year and said four other plants were expected to cease operations within the first half of fiscal 2024, with related charges − at the time, expected to cost the company $300 million to $400 million.

On Monday Tyson announced it would shutter the doors to its Perry, Iowa pork-packing plant.

“After careful consideration, we have made the difficult decision to permanently close our Perry, Iowa, pork facility,” a company spokesman wrote in an email to USA TODAY Tuesday.

The small city of Perry is in Dallas County, about 40 miles northwest of Des Moines. Its population was just over 7,800 people at the time of the 2020 Census.

Tyson said it will encourage workers there to apply for other positions within the company as it still employs 9,000 people in Iowa, and it has pork facilities in Waterloo, Storm Lake and Columbus Junction.

Here’s what to know about the closures:

When is the Perry, Iowa Tyson Food plant closing?

Mayor Dirk Cavanaugh said company officials told him the official closure will take place in June, the Des Moines Register, part of the USA TODAY NETWORK reported.

“It’s our economic base,” the mayor said.

How many Tyson Food employees are losing their jobs in Iowa?

The pending summer closure of the Perry plant will leave 1,276 workers at the city’s largest employer without jobs.

“Tyson employees, the Perry community, and Iowa pork producers will have the full support of the state in the months leading up to the plant closure and after,” Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds released in a statement Monday.

The state Economic Development Authority and Iowa Workforce Development are “already engaged,” Reynolds said. “We stand ready to assist impacted employees with finding new jobs in the area as soon as possible,” with about 60,000 job openings posted on

A Tyson food product is seen in Montpelier, Vt., Nov. 18, 2011. Tyson Foods Inc. (TSN) on Monday reported a loss of $417 million in its fiscal third quarter. (AP Photo/Toby Talbot, File)

A Tyson food product is seen in Montpelier, Vt., Nov. 18, 2011. Tyson Foods Inc. (TSN) on Monday reported a loss of $417 million in its fiscal third quarter. (AP Photo/Toby Talbot, File)

The United Food and Commercial Workers union Local 1149 represents between 700 and 800 of the plant’s employees.

“We feel that Tyson owes that community (Perry) and the employees some kind of compensation, some kind of training, some kind of benefit for a lot of those families,” the union’s president, Roger Kail, said.

Why is the Perry, Iowa Tyson Food plant closing?

A spokesperson told USA TODAY via email, “While this decision was not easy, it emphasizes our focus to optimize the efficiency of our operations to best serve our customers.”

The spokesperson did not say why the company chose to close the Iowa plant.

The move comes after the pork industry encountered staggering losses over the past year.

“I’m disappointed but not surprised,” given the grim economic conditions pork producers are struggling with, said Pat McGonegle, CEO of the Iowa Pork Producers Association.

Last year marked the worst financial downturn in a quarter century for Iowa and U.S. pork producers, with rising costs outstripping prices farmers received for their livestock, experts have said.

Steve Meyer, chief livestock economist at Ever.Ag, a Texas-based agricultural technology, risk management and market analysis company, said the “packer market has been good since mid-last year.”

He said Tyson likely targeted the Perry plant because its size and age made it difficult to add a second shift, which limits operation efficiency.

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What other Tyson Food plants have closed?

Last May, Tyson Foods closed two facilities in Virginia and Arkansas that employed more than 1,600 people. The month prior, in April, it also said it planned to eliminate about 10% of corporate jobs and 15% of senior leadership roles.

During the August 2023’s earnings call, Tyson President and CEO Donnie King announced plants in North Little Rock, Arkansas; Corydon, Indiana; and Dexter and Noel, Missouri were expected to cease operations within the first half of fiscal 2024.

At the time, a spokesperson for Tyson declined to say how many jobs will be eliminated due to the closures.

Contributing: Bailey Schultz

Natalie Neysa Alund is a senior reporter for USA TODAY. Reach her at [email protected] and follow her on X @nataliealund.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Tyson closes Perry, Iowa plant, putting 1,200 out of work

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