WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Representative Gregg Harper (R – Miss.) joined the Mississippi Poultry Association to announce that Mississippi’s Third Congressional District leads the nation in poultry production, according to recently released data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s 2007 Census of Agriculture.
“Mississippi’s poultry producers should be proud to lead the nation’s competitive agriculture industry,” said Congressman Gregg Harper. “Poultry production provides the Third Congressional District and the State of Mississippi with firm jobs and a steady source of revenue.”
The Third Congressional District, stretching from Woodville to Starkville, includes the bulk of the state’s poultry producing areas generating $1.78 billion in poultry and egg sales. Five additional congressional districts from Alabama, Arkansas, and Georgia topped $1 billion in poultry farm sales.
Poultry is Mississippi’s largest agricultural product with $2.44 billion in poultry and egg farm sales. The industry employs approximately 20,000 people on farms, feed mills, hatcheries, processing plants and other related industries with a total $6 billion impact on the state’s economy.
Mississippi’s Third Congressional District also leads the nation in broilers and other meat-type chickens sold with 615 million birds sold in 2007 from 1,032 farms. Congressional districts in Alabama and Arkansas have more broiler farms, but sold fewer chickens.
“We knew the poultry industry is huge in Mississippi, but the numbers from the USDA prove that Congressman Harper’s District is the buckle of the chicken belt for the United States,” said Mark Leggett, President, Mississippi Poultry Association.
Mississippi Poultry Association members include Cal-Maine Foods, the world’s largest egg company, and chicken processors Lady Forest Farms, Marshall Durbin, Peco Foods, Sanderson Farms, Southern Hens, Tyson Foods, and Wayne Farms. More than 800 growers and 200 companies that supply goods and services to the industry are members.
A conservative man of faith and integrity, Gregg took the Oath of Office in January 2009 to serve the citizens of Mississippi’s Third Congressional District. Prior to being sworn-in, his peers elected him as the only freshman on the Republican Steering Committee in the House of Representatives. Gregg is the only Republican freshman appointed by Republican Leader John Boehner to the Committee on House Administration and also sits on the Committee on the Judiciary and the Committee on the Budget. Gregg currently resides in Pearl with his wife of 29 years, Sidney, and their two children, Livingston and Maggie, where the Harpers are active members of Crossgates Baptist church.