Construction of Sanderson Farms' new poultry complex in Palestine, Texas, is slated to start on October 1. Sanderson Farms previously announced the selection of this location on February 14, but plans for construction had been on hold because of uncertainty surrounding grain prices, as well as other contingencies, including obtaining approval from the Sanderson Farms board of directors to move forward with the project.

The new complex will consist of a feed mill, hatchery, poultry processing plant and wastewater facility. At full capacity, the Palestine facility will process 1.25 million head of chickens per week for the big bird-deboning market.

"We are very pleased the board has authorized an increase in our dividend rate and granted final approval to commence construction of our next poultry complex," commented Joe F. Sanderson, Jr., chairman and CEO of Sanderson Farms.

"Our solid financial and operating performance, consistent growth and strong balance sheet have allowed us to move forward on both of these actions and further demonstrate our confidence in Sanderson Farms' future and our commitment to building shareholder value.

"We are excited about the new opportunities ahead for Sanderson Farms as we expand our production capacity and presence in Texas. We sincerely appreciate the support, encouragement and welcome we have received from the public officials and communities in Palestine, Anderson County, Freestone County and Austin, and we look forward to this next stage of growth for our shareholders, employees, customers and other stakeholders."