Pilgrim's Pride Corp., Pittsburg, Texas, said it will close its Dalton, Ga., chicken processing plant within 60 days and consolidate production into the company's Chattanooga, Tenn., operation. The closure affects approximately 280 workers but will not impact hatchery and other live production activities.

"The closing of the Dalton plant is part of our plan to maximize our capacity utilization and operate more efficiently as a market-driven company," said Don Jackson, president and CEO. "We will continue to look for opportunities to improve our cost structure as we reorganize the company."

As previously announced, Pilgrim's Pride filed voluntary Chapter 11 petitions on December 1, 2008.