Jim Perdue, chairman of Perdue Farms, said it is likely that chicken prices will increase later in 2020.

During an interview with Fox Business host Maria Bartiromo, Perdue answered questions concerning how the African swine fever (ASF) outbreak in China and the global COVID-19 pandemic have had on the poultry industry.

“It’s been quite a rollercoaster ride,” said Perdue, who pointed out that the pandemic has prevented the company from celebrating its 100th anniversary like it wanted to.

When asked about ASF’s impact on the poultry industry, Perdue said it did have an impact on protein around the world, but he added that it didn’t impact the price of poultry like it did with pork and other meats.

Perdue also noted that the price of chicken is down from where it was at this time in 2019, but he does not expect the prices to stay where they are now.

“Because there’s been about a 5% reduction in eggs being hatched, there is going to be, probably, due to supply and demand, an increase in market prices coming up this year,” said Perdue.

Other COVID-19 impacts

With restaurants and foodservice providers closures related to the pandemic, many poultry companies with a large distribution to the foodservice sector have been struggling. Perdue said that struggle has not been as rough for Perdue.

“Overall, demand has been pretty strong. We’re a retail company so we were able to supply supermarkets,” he said, pointing out that only about 20-25% of Perdue Farms’ business is for the foodservice sector.

The chairman also said Perdue Farms is seeing increased orders through its direct-to-consumer website, which sells pork, beef, lamb, chicken and turkey.

Perdue Farms, according to the WATTAgNet Top Poultry Companies survey, is the fourth largest broiler company in the United States and the seventh largest turkey producer in the country.

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