Smile Tolerantly

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The Problem with Tyson Foods

Tyson Foods decided to start closing plants, fire American workers, and hire recently arrived illegal aliens to fill the spots in their processing plants. That decision has ignited a firestorm and a nationwide boycott of Tyson Foods products.

Check out Tyson Foods website. It is filled with homey black-and-white photos and glowing descriptions of its history.

“The Tyson Foods story begins during the Great Depression. In 1931, John W. Tyson moved his family to Springdale, Arkansas, in search of new opportunities. He finds them, thousands of them, all feathered and squawking. He begins delivering chickens to larger markets in the Midwest.”

This is the quintessential American rags-to-riches story. Hard work. Family values. Decency.

Leaving all morality and decency aside for a moment, was it impossible for the high-priced talent in Tyson Foods’ front office to figure out that this particularly sleazy move would not go down well with the people who buy its products?

Tyson is based in Arkansas. It markets its cheap products under various labels. One of those is Jimmy Dean. Jimmy was an American country music star who started the sausage brand, now owned by Tyson. Jimmy grew up dirt poor in Texas. Probably his biggest hit was “Big John,” a tribute to American coal workers.

Another of the Tyson brands is Hillshire Farms. This is how that company describes itself.

“In 1934, our founder, Fritz Bernegger, started the Hillshire Farm® brand with a dream to deliver only the best to his customers—the best cuts of meat from the best farms with the best practices. His legacy still holds today, as the Hillshire Farm® brand provides only the highest-quality products for the whole family to enjoy.”

Fritz was a legal immigrant from Austria. He came to this country and built a company that sold kielbasa sausage and other smoked meats from the ground up. I wonder how Fritz would feel about firing all your workers and replacing them with people who began their time in this country by violating our laws and expecting legal residents of the country to support them with their tax dollars.

Ball Park Hot Dogs is another of Tyson Foods’ many brands. It has another all-American backstory. In 1958, the Detroit Tigers decided they weren’t satisfied with the quality of the hot dogs sold in their stadium. They had a competition to select a new dog, and Hygrade Food Products, owned by the Slotkin family, won. Ball Park Franks became the official hot dog of the Detroit Tigers. Their recipe remains a secret to this day.

Ball Park Franks are sold all over the country today. More Americans buy and eat Ball Park Franks than any other hot dog.

Or at least they did.

It’s up to you to decide what you will and won’t buy, what you will and will not eat.

I refuse to buy products from Smithfield Foods, which the Chinese WH Group owns. It’s my choice, and I don’t buy Chinese food products because I don’t trust the quality. I don’t buy toothpaste made in China. Tyson sells chicken to China. They deny that it’s packaged and re-shipped to American markets. I don’t know whether that is the case or not. Their move to fire Americans and hire illegal aliens was not denied by Tyson. It’s a corporate decision designed to increase their bottom line.


Identify the Aircraft


Identify the Armor

17 thoughts on “Smile Tolerantly

  1. That’s an M5 light and the M6 heavy.

    I’m gonna have to take a closer look at the airplane.

    – Kle.

    1. The plane looks like a Curtiss A-8 Shrike, but with a much cleaner engine set-up.

      More than that, IDK.

      – Kle.

  2. Tyson- During my recent Costco run I was lured into the chicken wing and strip aisle, thinking, “could use some of this comfort food for a quick lunch”. Grabbed a bag of Tyson chicken strips that were on special for a couple of bucks off. Gag me. Landed like an Ultra-Processed lead balloon. Tossed the bag. No more of their product after reading this…and how is it Tyson gets special treatment hiring illegals when contractors get fined and their work truck and tools confiscated? Add Smithfield also, can’t trust what’s in the mix, like the eye drops scare a few years back.

    Header picture- Roosters are coming home…to do something…looking like they’ve been in a fight for their lives.

  3. In the past, I tried Tyson frozen chicken products. They aren’t very good, and I doubt they’re so fantastic today that I would want to buy more. With their hiring of illegals to increase their profits, I’ll avoid any of their products in the future. In the end, their mistake will cost them to lose shareholders, profits and the trust of their former customers. It serves them right.

  4. When I lived in North Carolina there was a Tyson chicken processing plant in town. They made it a priority to hire people who had come across the border by various means – because the workers would not protest against illegal and unsafe working practices and conditions. This was about twenty years ago.
    Once upon a time I would buy Hillshire products, but haven’t done so for some time now because of the new owners.

  5. Regarding Tyson, they’ve been doing this garbage for over 30 years. And who would eat that garbage anyways? Takes about the same amount of time to cook fresh chicken ‘nuggets’ made from real chicken than the processed chicken that is pressure-blasted from chicken and then press-formed into shape.

    And the rooster… Back in the day, when I was in the SCA, I knew a guy who had a little gamecock. Would carry it around on his shoulder and ask people if they wanted to see his little cock. Good joke.

    1. Well over 30, Beans. Pretty much from Day One, far as I can tell, and I’ve been dealing with those guys a long time. Hence the name change. Wouldn’t do to get identified.

      And remember Tyson is into beef and pork as well, so……

  6. When I lived in LA(Lower Alabama) I lived next to farmers that raised pullets from a certain age until a certain weight and size then Tyson trucks would pull up and take the pullets that were ready. At least they didn’t stink like a chicken processing plant, but the the feed Tyson delivered to these farmers stunk to high heaven, you always knew when a load was dumped into the silos. The smell of the chicken barns was strong when they cleaned them out as the feed was, and was spread over farmers fields’. I always politely refused any produce coming off of those fields from my neighbors. I wouldn’t eat any chicken or any of Tyson’s other product lines. I used to head up to the Northern part of Alabama to find chickens to buy as Tyson or Cargill wasn’t up in that area and you could buy chickens untainted by Tyson genetic line.

  7. I buy Claxton chicken and eggs. It is a local chicken processing plant that has sales all through the south east. Their hatchery in in my town and the processing plant is in the next town, Claxton. I don’t do Tyson, Hillshire Farms, or Ball Park hot dogs but I did buy Jimmy Dean sausage. Not anymore. BTW: I buy Nathan’s Hot Dogs.

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