Sanderson Farms is looking at a possible acquisition to help the company increase its prepared foods sales, the company’s CEO said.

Speaking at the BMO Capital Markets 11th Annual Farm to Market Conference on May 18, Joe Sanderson Jr., chairman and CEO of Sanderson Farms, acknowledged that the company has “made inquiries” concerning acquisitions.

“Our strategy has always been to have prepared foods as ten percent of our total sales,” he explained.

But with the company’s current prepared foods operations running at capacity, last year and this year, the company’s prepared foods sales accounted for only about 6.7 percent of the company’s sales.

With a new plant in Palestine, Texas, getting closer to reaching full production, and another new plant in St. Pauls, North Carolina, expected to begin production in the first quarter of fiscal year 2017, the percentage of sales attributable to prepared foods will decline even more if a new prepared foods facility is not added, Sanderson said.

 “So when somebody asks me will we make an acquisition, the answer is yes, just so we can keep that at ten percent of our sales,” he explained.

Headquartered in Laurel, Mississippi, Sanderson Farms is the third largest poultry company in the United States.