Pilgrim's has identified an increased mortality rate of the breeder flock at the company's complex located in the state of Guanajuato in central Mexico.
The company stated that its managers are working closely with regulatory authorities to perform blood tests to check for whether the H7N3 avian influenza virus is present, but has already instituted preventative precautions. The identified complex has been isolated with additional biosecurity measures implemented. These measures include seeking and receiving authorization to vaccinate both breeders and grandparent stock in unaffected areas. The Guanajuato complex is responsible for a small amount of Pilgrim's Mexican hatching eggs. The majority of Pilgrim's hatching operations are strategically located in other states throughout Mexico.
"We recognize the importance of chicken as a protein source to our customers in Mexico. We've taken proactive measures leveraging our U.S. production facilities to supply eggs and processed meat from our U.S. operations, as well as alternative suppliers locally. We expect to be able to source an uninterrupted supply of both hatching eggs and chicken products, allowing us to continue to provide our customers and consumers with high quality products," stated Bill Lovette, Pilgrim's chief executive officer.