Tyson Foods sues Foster Farms, former vice president

Tyson Foods filed a lawsuit against Foster Farms and Brian Baker, a former Tyson Foods vice president who accepted a similar position with Foster Farms.

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(Zerbor | BigStock.com)
(Zerbor | BigStock.com)

Tyson Foods has filed a lawsuit against Foster Farms and a man who recently resigned from a leadership position with Tyson to assume a new role with Foster Farms.

According to a court document, Tyson Foods filed a lawsuit in the Circuit Court of Washington County, Arkansas, alleging that Brian Baker is breaching a non-competition and non-solicitation agreement he signed with Tyson Foods, from which he recently resigned to accept a new job at Foster Farms.

The lawsuit alleges the two defendants are “engaging in a course of conduct designed to enrich themselves at the expense of Tyson Foods.”

According to the court document, Baker began his employment with Tyson Foods in 2004, and in October 2021, he was promoted to the company’s vice president of poultry optimization. He also previously served as Tyson’s vice president of business operations. Tyson alleges that Baker agreed to not be employed by any competing entities for a 12-month period following his departure.

Baker, according to the lawsuit, resigned from Tyson Foods on June 6 to accept a job offer at Foster Farms, where his duties would be similar to the ones he conducted during his tenure at Tyson.

Tyson Foods ranks as the largest broiler producer and the fifth largest turkey producer in the United States, while Foster Farms ranks 12th and 14th among U.S. broiler and turkey producers, respectively.

It was announced earlier this week that Foster Farms was acquired by Atlas Holdings, a Connecticut-based company that owns and operates 25 companies and employs about 50,000 people worldwide. It was also announced that Donnie Smith, who served as the CEO of Tyson Foods from 2009 to 2016, had been named the new chairman and CEO of Foster Farms.

Foster Farms is headquartered in Livingston, California, while Tyson Foods is headquartered in Springdale, Arkansas.

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