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Company > Pilgrim's Pride: Business Model, SWOT Analysis, and Competitors 2023

Pilgrim's Pride: Business Model, SWOT Analysis, and Competitors 2023

Published: Jun 21, 2023

Inside This Article


    In this blog article, we will delve into the business model of Pilgrim's Pride, a leading poultry producer, and explore its strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats through a comprehensive SWOT analysis. As we look ahead to 2023, we will also identify the key competitors in the industry and examine how Pilgrim's Pride positions itself amidst the fierce competition. Join us as we analyze the strategies, market trends, and potential challenges that Pilgrim's Pride is likely to face in the coming years.

    What You Will Learn:

    • Who owns Pilgrim's Pride and the significance of ownership in a company's operations and decision-making processes.
    • The mission statement of Pilgrim's Pride and how it reflects the company's values and goals.
    • The various revenue streams and business strategies employed by Pilgrim's Pride to generate income and maintain profitability.
    • An in-depth understanding of Pilgrim's Pride's business model canvas, including its key components and how they contribute to the company's success.
    • Identification of Pilgrim's Pride's major competitors in the poultry industry and the potential impact on the company's market position.
    • A comprehensive SWOT analysis of Pilgrim's Pride, evaluating its strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats, providing insights into its overall business outlook.

    Who owns Pilgrim's Pride?

    Ownership History

    Pilgrim's Pride, one of the largest poultry producers in the United States, has an interesting ownership history. The company was originally founded in 1946 by Lonnie "Bo" Pilgrim and his brother, Aubrey Pilgrim, in Pittsburg, Texas. For several decades, it remained a family-owned business, with the Pilgrim family maintaining majority ownership.

    Acquisition by JBS

    However, in 2009, Pilgrim's Pride faced financial difficulties due to high debt and oversupply in the poultry market. As a result, the company filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. During the bankruptcy proceedings, Brazilian meat-processing giant JBS S.A. emerged as a key player.

    JBS, already one of the world's largest meat producers, recognized the potential in Pilgrim's Pride and saw an opportunity to expand its operations in the United States. In a strategic move, JBS acquired a majority stake in Pilgrim's Pride, injecting much-needed capital into the struggling company.

    Current Ownership Structure

    As of now, JBS S.A. holds a majority ownership in Pilgrim's Pride, with a stake of approximately 79%. This acquisition has allowed Pilgrim's Pride to benefit from JBS's global presence and extensive distribution network. The remaining shares of Pilgrim's Pride are publicly traded on the NASDAQ stock exchange, offering minority ownership opportunities for individual and institutional investors.

    Impact on Pilgrim's Pride

    JBS's ownership has had a significant impact on Pilgrim's Pride's operations and growth trajectory. Under JBS's leadership, the company has implemented various strategies to improve efficiencies, expand market reach, and enhance product quality. This has resulted in Pilgrim's Pride becoming a key player in the poultry industry, with a strong market presence in the United States and abroad.


    While Pilgrim's Pride started as a family-owned business, it is now primarily owned by JBS S.A., a global meat-processing giant. This acquisition has transformed Pilgrim's Pride and allowed it to thrive in an increasingly competitive industry. The partnership between Pilgrim's Pride and JBS continues to shape the company's future, enabling it to deliver high-quality poultry products to consumers worldwide.

    What is the mission statement of Pilgrim's Pride?

    The Mission Statement of Pilgrim's Pride

    Pilgrim's Pride, one of the leading poultry producers in the United States, has a clear mission statement that guides their business operations and overall purpose. Their mission statement, as stated on their official website, is as follows:

    "Delivering superior value to our customers, employees, and shareholders as the leading global provider of high-quality, sustainable food products."

    This mission statement encapsulates the key priorities of Pilgrim's Pride. Let's break it down to understand its significance and impact.

    Delivering Superior Value

    Pilgrim's Pride aims to provide superior value to all stakeholders involved. This includes their customers, employees, and shareholders. By focusing on delivering exceptional value, Pilgrim's Pride strives to meet and exceed the expectations of these key groups.

    Leading Global Provider

    As a leading poultry producer, Pilgrim's Pride aspires to be the top provider of high-quality, sustainable food products worldwide. This ambition reflects their commitment to maintaining a strong market presence and expanding their global reach.

    High-Quality, Sustainable Food Products

    Pilgrim's Pride places a strong emphasis on producing food products of the highest quality. They understand the importance of delivering safe and nutritious poultry to consumers. Furthermore, the mention of sustainability in their mission statement highlights their dedication to environmentally responsible practices throughout their supply chain.

    Pilgrim's Pride's mission statement serves as a compass, guiding their decision-making and daily operations. It reinforces their commitment to meeting the needs of their customers, providing a conducive work environment for employees, and delivering value to their shareholders. By staying true to their mission, Pilgrim's Pride strives to maintain their position as a trusted and respected leader in the poultry industry.

    How does Pilgrim's Pride make money?

    Overview of Pilgrim's Pride

    Pilgrim's Pride is one of the largest poultry producers in the United States, specializing in chicken products. With a rich history dating back to 1946, the company has grown to become a dominant player in the poultry industry. This section will delve into the various revenue streams that contribute to Pilgrim's Pride's financial success.

    Poultry Production and Processing

    The primary source of revenue for Pilgrim's Pride is its poultry production and processing operations. The company operates a vast network of farms, hatcheries, and processing plants across the United States and Mexico. These facilities enable Pilgrim's Pride to efficiently produce and process millions of pounds of chicken products each year.

    From breeding and raising chickens to processing and packaging the final products, Pilgrim's Pride follows a vertically integrated model. This means that the company controls every aspect of the production process, from the quality of feed given to the chickens to the distribution of packaged products to retailers and foodservice providers. By maintaining control over the entire supply chain, Pilgrim's Pride can ensure consistent product quality and optimize efficiency, resulting in higher profitability.

    Retail and Foodservice Sales

    Once the chicken products are processed and packaged, Pilgrim's Pride distributes them to various customers, including retail chains and foodservice providers. The company has established strong relationships with major retailers such as Walmart, Kroger, and Costco, supplying them with a wide range of chicken products, including fresh, frozen, and value-added options.

    In addition to retail sales, Pilgrim's Pride caters to the foodservice industry, which includes restaurants, cafeterias, and other establishments. The company offers products specifically tailored to meet the needs of these customers, such as pre-cooked chicken strips, nuggets, and patties. This diversification allows Pilgrim's Pride to tap into different market segments, expanding its customer base and revenue streams.

    Export Market

    Pilgrim's Pride has a significant presence in the global market, exporting its products to over 100 countries. The company's reputation for high-quality poultry products has enabled it to establish a strong foothold in international markets. Pilgrim's Pride leverages its extensive distribution network and international partnerships to reach customers worldwide.

    International sales provide a crucial revenue stream for the company, allowing Pilgrim's Pride to mitigate risks associated with fluctuations in domestic demand. By diversifying its customer base across different countries, the company can offset any potential downturns in the United States market and capitalize on emerging opportunities in other regions.


    Pilgrim's Pride generates its revenue primarily through poultry production and processing operations. By following a vertically integrated model, the company ensures control over the entire supply chain, from farm to table. Retail and foodservice sales, along with exports, play a significant role in driving the company's financial success. With its strong market presence, Pilgrim's Pride continues to thrive in the competitive poultry industry, delivering high-quality chicken products to customers both domestically and abroad.

    Pilgrim's Pride Business Model Canvas Explained


    The Business Model Canvas is a strategic management tool that allows organizations to describe, design, challenge, and pivot their business models. In this section, we will delve into the Pilgrim's Pride Business Model Canvas to gain a deeper understanding of how this leading poultry company operates.

    Key Partnerships

    Pilgrim's Pride has built strong partnerships across various sectors of the poultry industry. Their key partners include farmers, suppliers of feed and other inputs, transportation and logistics companies, and retailers. These partnerships are crucial for ensuring a steady supply of high-quality chickens, efficient distribution, and wide market reach. By collaborating with reliable partners, Pilgrim's Pride is able to focus on its core competencies and deliver value to its customers.

    Key Activities

    The key activities of Pilgrim's Pride revolve around poultry production, processing, and distribution. They engage in breeding and raising chickens, operating processing plants, and delivering poultry products to retailers and foodservice providers. These activities require significant investments in infrastructure, technology, and skilled labor. Pilgrim's Pride is committed to maintaining efficient and sustainable operations to meet the growing demand for poultry products.

    Key Resources

    Pilgrim's Pride relies on a range of key resources to support its business model. These resources include chicken farms, processing plants, state-of-the-art machinery, skilled employees, and a strong brand reputation. The company's extensive network of farms ensures a consistent supply of chickens, while their processing plants are equipped with advanced technologies to ensure product quality and safety. Pilgrim's Pride also invests in training and development programs to nurture a skilled workforce that can meet the demands of the industry.

    Value Proposition

    Pilgrim's Pride offers a compelling value proposition to its customers. They provide a wide range of high-quality poultry products that meet varying consumer preferences and dietary requirements. The company emphasizes freshness, taste, and nutritional value in its products, ensuring that customers receive the best possible value for their money. Additionally, Pilgrim's Pride is committed to sustainability and animal welfare, which resonates with consumers who prioritize ethical and responsible food choices.

    Customer Segments

    Pilgrim's Pride serves a diverse range of customer segments. Their customers include retailers, such as grocery stores and supermarkets, as well as foodservice providers, including restaurants, fast-food chains, and institutional customers like schools and hospitals. By catering to different customer segments, Pilgrim's Pride can tap into multiple distribution channels and reach a wider consumer base.


    Pilgrim's Pride utilizes a multi-channel distribution strategy to reach its customers. They distribute their poultry products through various channels, including direct sales to retailers, distributors, and wholesalers. Pilgrim's Pride also leverages e-commerce platforms and online delivery services to reach consumers directly. By employing a combination of traditional and digital channels, the company ensures that its products are readily available to customers whenever and wherever they need them.

    Cost Structure

    The cost structure of Pilgrim's Pride is primarily composed of expenses related to chicken production, processing, and distribution. These include costs associated with feed, veterinary services, labor, facilities, transportation, and marketing. The company also invests in research and development to innovate and improve its products and processes continuously. By managing costs effectively, Pilgrim's Pride can maintain competitive pricing while delivering value to its customers.

    Revenue Streams

    Pilgrim's Pride generates revenue primarily through the sale of poultry products. They offer a diverse range of products, including fresh chicken, processed chicken products, and value-added products like marinated and seasoned chicken. Additionally, the company may generate revenue through co-packing arrangements and licensing agreements with other brands. By diversifying their product portfolio and exploring additional revenue streams, Pilgrim's Pride can maximize its profitability and sustain growth.


    The Pilgrim's Pride Business Model Canvas provides insights into the key elements that drive the success of this poultry company. By focusing on key partnerships, activities, resources, and value propositions, Pilgrim's Pride has established itself as a leading player in the industry. Their customer-centric approach and efficient distribution channels enable them to meet the demands of various customer segments effectively. With a strong revenue model and a commitment to sustainability, Pilgrim's Pride continues to thrive in the competitive poultry market.

    Which companies are the competitors of Pilgrim's Pride?

    Tyson Foods

    Tyson Foods is one of the major competitors of Pilgrim's Pride. As one of the largest food companies in the world, Tyson Foods is known for its extensive range of poultry products. Like Pilgrim's Pride, Tyson Foods operates in both the consumer and foodservice markets, providing various chicken products to meet the demands of different customers. The company's strong brand recognition and global presence make it a significant rival to Pilgrim's Pride.

    Sanderson Farms

    Sanderson Farms is another notable competitor of Pilgrim's Pride, primarily focusing on the production, processing, marketing, and distribution of fresh and frozen chicken products. With its vertically integrated operations, Sanderson Farms has a strong presence in the poultry industry. The company's commitment to producing high-quality chicken at competitive prices has allowed it to compete directly with Pilgrim's Pride and other industry players.

    Perdue Farms

    Perdue Farms is a family-owned company that has been in the poultry business for over a century. Known for its commitment to animal welfare and sustainable farming practices, Perdue Farms has built a strong reputation for producing premium-quality chicken products. The company's emphasis on quality and innovation has positioned it as a formidable competitor to Pilgrim's Pride, particularly in the premium chicken segment.

    Foster Farms

    Foster Farms is a regional poultry company that primarily serves the Western United States. With a focus on providing locally sourced, fresh chicken products, Foster Farms has developed a loyal customer base. While it may not have the scale and global reach of Pilgrim's Pride, Foster Farms competes by leveraging its strong brand presence and commitment to delivering high-quality chicken to its customers.

    Koch Foods

    Koch Foods is a leading poultry processor and distributor that operates across the United States. The company offers a wide range of chicken products, including fresh, frozen, and value-added options. Koch Foods' diverse product portfolio and extensive distribution network have positioned it as a direct competitor to Pilgrim's Pride in the highly competitive chicken market.


    Pilgrim's Pride faces significant competition from various companies in the poultry industry. Tyson Foods, Sanderson Farms, Perdue Farms, Foster Farms, and Koch Foods are just a few of its notable competitors. As these companies continue to innovate and meet the evolving demands of consumers, the competition in the chicken market remains fierce. Pilgrim's Pride will need to leverage its strengths, such as its production capabilities and strong brand, to stay ahead in this competitive landscape.

    Pilgrim's Pride SWOT Analysis


    1. Leading poultry producer: Pilgrim's Pride is one of the largest poultry producers in the United States, with a wide range of chicken products catering to both retail and foodservice sectors. The company's strong market position allows it to benefit from economies of scale and maintain a robust supply chain.

    2. Cost advantage: Pilgrim's Pride has a significant cost advantage due to its vertically integrated business model. The company controls every stage of production, from breeding and hatching chicks to processing and distribution. This integration enables them to streamline operations, reduce costs, and offer competitive prices to customers.

    3. Diverse product portfolio: Pilgrim's Pride offers a diverse range of chicken products, including fresh and frozen chicken, prepared foods, and value-added products. This broad product portfolio allows the company to cater to various customer preferences and adapt to changing market demands effectively.

    4. Strong distribution network: With a well-established distribution network, Pilgrim's Pride can efficiently distribute its products across the United States and internationally. This network ensures timely delivery and availability of products to customers, enhancing customer satisfaction and brand loyalty.


    1. Dependence on commodity prices: Pilgrim's Pride heavily relies on commodity prices, primarily corn and soybean, which are key components of animal feed. Fluctuations in these prices can significantly impact the company's profitability. Any increase in commodity prices could lead to higher production costs and potentially lower profit margins.

    2. Vulnerability to disease outbreaks: The poultry industry is susceptible to disease outbreaks, such as avian influenza. Pilgrim's Pride, like other poultry producers, faces the risk of an outbreak, which could result in a significant loss of poultry inventory, increased costs for disease control measures, and potential damage to the company's reputation.

    3. Limited geographic diversification: Although Pilgrim's Pride is a leading poultry producer in the United States, it has limited geographic diversification compared to some of its competitors. This leaves the company more exposed to regional economic fluctuations, changes in consumer preferences, and regulatory changes within the country.


    1. Growing demand for poultry products: There is a global trend towards healthier eating habits, with an increasing preference for lean protein sources like chicken. Pilgrim's Pride can capitalize on this opportunity by expanding its product offerings and increasing production capacity to meet the growing demand for poultry products.

    2. Expansion into international markets: Pilgrim's Pride has the opportunity to expand its presence in international markets. By leveraging its strong distribution network and brand reputation, the company can tap into new markets, especially in emerging economies where the demand for poultry products is growing rapidly.

    3. Innovation and product development: Pilgrim's Pride can invest in research and development to innovate and introduce new products that cater to evolving consumer preferences. This may include developing healthier or value-added chicken products, such as organic or antibiotic-free options, to attract health-conscious consumers and differentiate itself from competitors.


    1. Intense competition: The poultry industry is highly competitive, with numerous players vying for market share. Pilgrim's Pride faces competition from both large-scale poultry producers and smaller regional players. Intense competition can put pressure on pricing and potentially erode profit margins.

    2. Changing consumer preferences: Consumer preferences are continuously evolving, with increasing emphasis on factors like sustainability, animal welfare, and transparency in the food industry. Pilgrim's Pride needs to stay abreast of these changing preferences and adapt its practices and marketing strategies accordingly to maintain consumer trust and loyalty.

    3. Regulatory challenges: The poultry industry operates under various regulations related to food safety, animal welfare, and environmental sustainability. Compliance with these regulations can be complex and costly. Changes in regulations or failure to meet compliance standards may lead to fines, reputational damage, and disruption in operations for Pilgrim's Pride.

    Key Takeaways

    • Pilgrim's Pride is owned by JBS S.A., a Brazilian multinational company that is the largest meat processing company in the world.
    • The mission statement of Pilgrim's Pride is to provide high-quality, affordable food products to customers worldwide while maintaining a commitment to animal welfare, food safety, and sustainable practices.
    • Pilgrim's Pride primarily makes money through the production and sale of poultry products, including fresh and prepared chicken, as well as value-added products like deli meats and frozen foods.
    • The Pilgrim's Pride Business Model Canvas encompasses key elements such as key partners, key activities, value proposition, customer segments, channels, customer relationships, revenue streams, key resources, and cost structure.
    • Some of the main competitors of Pilgrim's Pride include Tyson Foods, Sanderson Farms, Perdue Farms, and Cargill Inc.
    • Pilgrim's Pride's SWOT analysis reveals strengths such as a strong brand reputation and global presence, weaknesses such as dependence on a few key customers, opportunities such as increasing demand for protein-based products, and threats such as intense competition and potential outbreaks of diseases affecting poultry farms.


    In conclusion, Pilgrim's Pride is owned by JBS S.A., a Brazilian company that is one of the largest food processing companies in the world. The mission statement of Pilgrim's Pride is to provide high-quality poultry products to its customers while maintaining a commitment to sustainability and animal welfare. The company primarily makes money through the sale of chicken products, which are distributed to various markets and customers globally.

    Pilgrim's Pride operates on a business model canvas that emphasizes key activities such as sourcing, processing, and marketing of poultry products. By maintaining strong relationships with suppliers and customers, the company ensures a steady supply chain and efficient distribution. Additionally, Pilgrim's Pride focuses on continuous improvement and innovation to enhance its product offerings and maintain a competitive edge.

    In terms of competition, Pilgrim's Pride faces rivals such as Tyson Foods, Sanderson Farms, and Perdue Farms. These companies also operate in the poultry industry and compete for market share and customer loyalty. However, Pilgrim's Pride has managed to establish itself as a leading player in the industry by differentiating itself through its commitment to quality, sustainability, and animal welfare.

    A SWOT analysis of Pilgrim's Pride reveals its strengths, such as its strong brand reputation, extensive distribution network, and diverse product portfolio. However, the company also faces weaknesses such as vulnerability to market fluctuations and potential risks associated with the poultry industry. Opportunities for Pilgrim's Pride include expanding into new markets and product lines, while threats include increasing competition, changing consumer preferences, and regulatory challenges.

    Overall, Pilgrim's Pride has proven to be a successful and resilient player in the poultry industry. With a clear mission, strong business model, and strategic positioning, the company continues to thrive and adapt to the ever-evolving market dynamics.

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