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Tyson Foods Both Closing Plants AND Seeking More Migrant Labor

author Published by Jared Culver

This week has seen reports that Tyson Foods is anxious to hire recent asylum seekers. The backlash got so bad that the company issued a statement proclaiming their opposition to illegal immigration and highlighted their use of E-Verify. Peel back another layer of the onion though, and the Tyson Foods statement smells worse than their nuggets. 

For this is not the only example in the recent past of Tyson Foods getting in trouble when it comes to labor issues. Just this month they settled wage suppression allegations for a total of $72 million. This settlement is part of a massive wage suppression conspiracy by major meatpacking companies. Other co-conspirators had already settled, with few remaining. In September, the Labor Department launched an investigation into Tyson Foods for allegations of child labor.

Additionally, while they are reportedly salivating at the sight of border chaos leading to an avalanche of cheap labor, Tyson is also closing plants in Iowa and Arkansas. 1,200 people are losing their jobs in Iowa alone. I suppose the plant closings will more than cover the wage suppression settlement price tag.

The phenomenon of industries laying off Americans while simultaneously seeking to hire foreign workers is common now. The tech industry has seen a (clutch pearls) bloodbath over the last couple of years with layoffs hitting companies large and small. According to the website, 209 tech companies have laid off 50,312 employees in 2024 alone. Last year, 1,191 tech companies laid off 263,180 employees. 

Meanwhile, the same tech industry that has laid off roughly 300,000 employees in about 15 months has also broken the record for H-1B visa applications. It was so bad that the government issued regulation changes to reduce the fraud they were witnessing in the program. 

If you’re keeping up, that means the tech industry was scheming to the point of forcing regulatory changes at the Federal level in an effort  to continue to import cheap labor. It is not a conspiracy or a leap of faith to connect these dots with Tyson as well. 

Because of President Biden’s illegal parole programs, the illegal population is authorized to seek employment in the United States. That means Tyson using E-Verify will not stop them from benefiting from Biden’s dereliction of duty at the border. In other words, they get to have their nuggets and eat them too. Tyson, if you’re opposed to illegal immigration, then why are you seeking to hire people that entered illegally?

And where does the wage suppression conspiracy fit in for the companies? Tyson is in an industry that claims they are offering jobs “Americans won’t do.” We hear this all the time. Democrats now proudly speak at public hearings on the record that we need immigrants to do everything from clean their homes to pick their food to delivering said food to their doorstep. 

The assumption is that Americans just do not want to work in meatpacking plants or in other tedious and/or laborious work. Of course, that assumption goes right out the window when the companies involved are suppressing wages. Everyone prefers less work to more work, but they will do it for sufficient wages. If the companies are really so desperate for labor, why are they conspiring to reduce wages? High pay is the best recruitment tool available, forget work/life balance or people at work being your family. Employees need pay, and lots of it, considering inflation. 

It stands to reason that if we observe a divergence between words and deeds, then it is the words that ring false. Companies across America, not just Tyson Foods, are pushing for more and more immigration into the United States. This has always been the case. It has equally been the case that mass immigration is in the economic interest of employers because it reduces labor costs. 

Tyson Foods has a divergence problem. They say the right things about opposing illegal immigration and using E-Verify, but that does not mean they oppose flooding the labor market with millions of unskilled laborers for them to exploit. The desperate and vulnerable will accept whatever wages they can get. 

Instead of telling us they oppose illegal immigration, Tyson should tell us how they are going to bump pay and offer generous benefit packages for these desperate vulnerable people they claim to want to help. But we all know that is not going to happen. Tyson Foods is in an industry built on exploitation of employees. Simple searches online of meatpacking and “labor violations” will keep you busy for days and awake at night thinking about the child and forced labor occurring daily. American businesses like Tyson are profiting from the chaos at the border at the expense of the illegal aliens and American workers. If American companies want to call this country home and claim our citizens as their customers, then they need to protect their home and customers.

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