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Unformatted text preview: t also its system for raising and processing poultry. “The impact of McNuggets
was so huge that it changed the industry,” the president of ConAgra Poultry, the nation’s third-largest chicken processor, later acknowledged.
Twenty years ago, most chicken was sold whole; today about 90 percent of the chicken sold in the United States has been cut into pieces,
cutlets, or nuggets. In 1992 American consumption of chicken for the first time surpassed the consumption of beef. Gaining the McNugget
contract helped turn Tyson Foods into the world’s largest chicken processor. Tyson now manufactures about half of the nation’s McNuggets
and sells chicken to ninety of the one hundred largest restaurant chains. It is a vertically integrated company that breeds, slaughters, and
processes chicken. It does not, however, raise the birds. It leaves the capital expenditures and the financial risks of that task to thousands of
A Tyson chicken grower never owns the birds in his or her poultry houses. Like most of the other leadi...
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- Spring '08