Kevin McDaniel, Wayne Farms vice president and general manager of fresh operations, has been named chief operating officer, effective immediately.

In his new position, McDaniel will report directly to Chief Executive Officer Clint Rivers, overseeing the fresh and prepared foods business units across the company’s nine production facilities, including the sales operations and live operations.

McDaniel brings more than three decades of industry expertise to his new role with the company, including previous roles as President of Aviagen North America and senior positions with O.K. Foods and Pilgrim’s Pride. He held key positions with The Poultry Federation, including chairman vice-chairman,   treasurer,   secretary   and   board  member. In 2011, he was named the Federation Industry Man of the Year.

He was named to the position Wayne Farms vice president and general manager of the company’s fresh operations in February 2019. He had also previously served as senior director of fresh operations for Wayne Farms.


McDaniel currently serves on the boards of the National Chicken Council (NCC) and the U.S. Poultry & Egg Association (USPOULTRY). McDaniel earned a bachelor of science degree in agricultural economics from Stephen F. Austin State University.

Headquartered in Oakwood, Georgia, Wayne Farms LLC was founded in 1965 as the poultry division of Continental Grain Co., officially changing its name to Wayne Farms in 2000. It’s key brands are Wayne Farms, Platinum Harvest, Crisp Fliers, Buffaloos, Chef’s Craft, Naked Truth and Ladybird.

In 2020, the company produced 48.8 million pounds of ready-to-cook chicken on a weekly basis, according to the Top Companies Database. It ranks as the seventh largest poultry company in the United States and the 19th largest poultry company in the world.