Historical Marker Dedication: Fieldale Farms and Georgia’s Poultry Industry


May 23, 2024    
11:00 am

The Georgia Historical Society will hold a dedication for a new historical marker: Fieldale Farms and Georgia’s Poultry Industry. The dedication will take place on Thursday, May 23, 2024, at 11:00 a.m. at Poultry Park – 444 Jesse Jewell Pkwy SE, Gainesville, GA 30501. The event is open to the public.

The marker reads:

Fieldale Farms and Georgia’s Poultry Industry

Tom and Lee Arrendale grew up in north Georgia, and Joe Hatfield in Tennessee, during the Depression. After World War II, the Arrendales expanded the family’s feed business; Hatfield built chicken processing businesses in Gainesville. In 1962 Ralston Purina bought Hatfield’s Gainesville Fryer Company and the Arrendale assets, and the three men became Purina managers.  In 1972, the Arrendales and Hatfield bought Purina’s north Georgia poultry operations, combining their last names to create Fieldale Farms. Fieldale’s worth grew from $6 million to $36 million within ten years and helped establish Gainesville as “the poultry capital of the world,” and poultry as one of Georgia’s most important industries in the second half of the 20th century. Headquartered in Baldwin, Fieldale Farms is one of the largest privately held and independent poultry producers in the world.

Erected by the Georgia Historical Society and Fieldale Farms