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Stung by pandemic and JBS cyberattack, U.S. ranchers build new beef plants

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Workers use knives to butcher cattle carcasses at a new Hertzog Meat Co beef plant, in Butler, Missouri, U.S., June 14, 2021. Picture taken June 14, 2021.  Todd Hertzog/Handout via REUTERS.

Workers use knives to butcher cattle carcasses at a new Hertzog Meat Co beef plant, in Butler, Missouri, U.S., June 14, 2021. Picture taken June 14, 2021. Todd Hertzog/Handout via REUTERS.

Workers use knives to butcher cattle carcasses at a new Hertzog Meat Co beef plant, in Butler, Missouri, U.S., June 14, 2021. Picture taken June 14, 2021. Todd Hertzog/Handout via REUTERS.

U.S. cattle ranchers and investors are sinking hundreds of millions of dollars into new beef plants after temporary closures of massive slaughterhouses at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic left farmers with nowhere to send animals destined to be turned into meat.

A cyberattack against the U.S. unit of Brazilian meatpacking giant JBS SA that idled nearly a quarter of America’s beef production earlier this month again highlighted vulnerabilities in the country’s meat supply chain and caused more headaches for farmers.


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