Pilgrim Pride & Hillshire Brands Merger Could Mean Promising Future

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FLORENCE, Ala.(WHNT) - It's an announcement that could lead to a promising future. Pilgrim's Pride, a chicken processing plant that employs 35,000 people, announced that it wants to acquire Hillshire Brands.

The goal is to create a protein-focused company with strong consistent earnings. If accepted, Shoals leaders are hopeful the area gets a chance to get on Pilgrim's radar.

"I'm sure local officials will be anxious to talk to them if this materializes, to see if there are any or all part of all of it they can use for something else," said Shoals Chamber of Commerce President Stephen Holt.

An opportunity local leaders believe can possibly bring more jobs.

"We're as diverse as we have ever been. And maybe as well balanced as we have ever been. I still excited about this market about what we can and what we will do this year," said Holt.

A year full of surprises. From losing jobs to possibly gaining more jobs in the Shoals area.

"But again, i think we have to be careful not to get excited that this can be a game changer for us. The reality is mergers are taking place everywhere right now. And this is another big one," said Holt.

Hillshire brands released a statement saying it's thoroughly reviewing the proposal. The company has not made a decision if it will merge with Pilgrim's Pride.

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