Sanderson Farms evacuated its poultry plant in Palestine, Texas, on January 3 after a bomb threat was made during a phone call to the facility.

According to a report from KLTV, the call was received in the afternoon, and officers from the Palestine Police Department were paged to the scene.

Workers at the Palestine poultry plant were evacuated while officers conducted a search of the building. However, nothing was found to indicate that workers would be in any danger and they were allowed to return to the building and resume working.

Information concerning a suspect or a motive has not yet been released.


The poultry complex in Palestine is one of Sanderson Farms’ newest. The company first announced in February 2013 that it would build the plant in Palestine, after earlier plans to build it in Nash County, North Carolina fell through. It began construction of the plant later that year, with the intent to process 1.25 million head of chickens per week for the big bird deboning market. Operations there began in February 2015, and a second shift was added in April 2016.

Since it built the poultry plant in Palestine, Sanderson Farms has grown further, building a new complex in St. Pauls, North Carolina, and one in Tyler, Texas.

Sanderson Farms is the third largest broiler company in the United States, according to the WATTAgNet Top Poultry Companies Database. In 2016, Sanderson Farms processed 72.4 million pounds of ready-to-cook chicken on a weekly basis. The company is headquartered in Laurel, Mississippi.