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Associated Press

Feds suing poultry producers over unfair worker practices

The Justice Department is expected to file a lawsuit against some of the largest poultry producers in the U.S. along with a proposed settlement seeking to end what it claims have been longstanding deceptive and abusive practices for workers. The suit is being filed in federal court in Maryland naming Cargill, Sanderson Farms and Wayne Farms, along with a data consulting company known as Weber, Meng, Sahl and Company, according to three people familiar with the matter. In its lawsuit, the Justice Department alleges the companies have been engaged in a multiyear conspiracy to exchange information about the wages and benefits of workers at poultry processing plants in order to drive down employee competition in the marketplace, the people said.