Another JBS packing plant fire spooks cattle industry

GRAND ISLAND, Neb. — Flames were seen from the roof of a JBS beef packing plant west of Omaha late Sunday night, though no injuries have been reported.

The five-alarm fire was said to be in the walls and roof of the rendering section of the 6,000 head per day facility.

What isn’t known at this point is how much damage has occurred and how long will the plant be idle.

In a JBS Facebook post, the company notified workers that “As of this time fabrication and slaughter A and B shift will not be working September 13, 2021.”

For the industry, it raises concern as recent market disruption issues in the cattle market appear to have ignited after a 2019 fire at the JBS facility in Holcomb, Kansas.

Economists have referred to the first fire as a “black swan” event, but also have said it characterizes how reliant cattlemen are on the four major beef packing companies (JBS, Tyson, Cargill, and National Beef) and why an unanticipated shutdown leads to wide-spread bottlenecks in the overall supply chain.

Both Congress and the Biden Administration have been formulating efforts to address the situation, whether through legislation, regulation, or even prosecution of monopolistic behaviors.

(SOURCE: All Ag News)

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