December 17, 2008


Agriprocessors owe livestock sellers, poultry growers US$6 million


US slaughterhouse and meat-packaging factory Agriprocessors owes more than US$6 million in claims to livestock sellers and poultry growers, under the Packers and Stockyards Act.


The US Congress amended the Packers and Stockyards Act in 1976 so that the inventory, receivables and proceeds derived from purchased livestock are assets that belong to unpaid sellers.


America's biggest kosher meat-packing company based in Postville, Iowa, filed for bankruptcy on Nov 5.


The US Department of Agriculture found US$6.08 million in livestock and poultry grower trust and bond claims against Agriprocessors.


Forty-three claims by 25 livestock producers and businesses are filed against the packer bond and 41 claims by 24 producers and businesses filed against the packer trust.


The largest amount in livestock claims, US$582,915, was filed by Kalona Sales Barn, Kalona. The second highest was US$521,598 filed by Central Livestock Association, Inc., of South St. Paul, Minnesota. That was followed by US$345,371 in claims filed by Leon Farrow/J & L Farms, Ledyard. Waverly Sales Company of Waverly, filed US$194,006 in claims and Equity Cooperative Livestock Sales Association of Baraboo, Wisconsin, filed claims of US$186,913.


There are 17 poultry grower claims. The highest trust claim was US$2.02 million filed by John Burger/Burger Turkey Farms, Jasper, Ind. Lyle Opheim/Four County Ag of Postville filed a claim for US$660,614. Dietrick Enterprises of Cedar Falls, filed a claim for US$384,802. The fourth-largest claim was filed by Dan Byl of Maurice for US$64,241. The fifth-largest claim was from Ross Enterprises/Brad Helberg of Winona, Minnesota, for US$54,357. 

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