Gov. Bobby Jindal has put together an emergency task force that includes most of his cabinet and Agriculture Commissioner Mike Strain that's meeting daily to form a strategy that would mitigate Pilgrim's Pride's decision to close its northeastern Louisiana operations and eliminate 1,300 direct jobs.
Strain and Jindal chief of staff Timmy Teepell said their top priority is finding a buyer for the company's infrastructure, which includes processing and protein conversion plants in Farmerville, hatcheries in Choudrant and Athens and a feed mill in Arcadia.
Almost 300 independent growers, many with $1 million or more invested in their chicken houses, also will be ruined unless a new owner can be found.
"We've got a full-court press on doing everything we can," Strain said.