April 25, 2006

Some Cargill meat plants to close Monday for rally

CHICAGO (Reuters) - Cargill Meat Solutions, a unit of
Cargill Inc., said five of its U.S. beef plants and two hog
plants will be closed this coming Monday due to the immigration
rallies scheduled for that day.

"We talked with employees and many wanted to participate in
the May 1 activities. Because we share the concerns of many
employees about HR-4437, we felt it was appropriate to change
the schedules," Mark Klein, Cargill spokesman, said in an

HR-4437 is a bill passed by the U.S. House of
Representatives that proposes to erect a fence along much of
the U.S.-Mexico border and declare illegal immigrants felons.

Cargill Meat Solutions is the No. 2 U.S. beef producer and
No. 3 pork producer, according to industry estimates.

Similar rallies on April 10 reduced U.S. meat production.
The meat industry, which relies heavily on immigrant labor, has
been advocating immigration reform to ensure a legal and stable
work force.

Cargill said the beef plants that will be down Monday are
in Plainview and Friona, Texas; Dodge City, Kansas; Schuyler,
Nebraska; and Ft. Morgan, Colorado. The two hog plants are in
Wapello County, Iowa; and Beardstown, Illinois.

The five beef plants will run Tuesday through Saturday next
week. The two pork plants will operate Tuesday through Friday
with a "few longer shifts."