Consolidation in the chicken industry has led to higher prices for consumers, worse conditions for farmers and huge profits for producers like Tyson and Pilgrim's Pride, says Christopher Leonard, author of "The Meat Racket". The oligarchy in the meat industry has enabled these companies to achieve immense political power, enough to drive America's farm and trade policies, contends Leonard. Finally, Leonard says last year's Smithfield Foods purchase by a Chinese company puts America's food supply at risk due to the lack of competition.
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