Corporations: Ling Chops Up the Meatball

The packers make money out of everything but the pig's squeal.

—Old Stockyards Saying

When Ling-Temco-Vought took over Chicago's Wilson & Co. in 1967, James J. Ling showed the finesse of a butcher slicing a juicy porterhouse. He carved the company into three parts—meat packing, sporting goods and drugs—and sold pieces of each part to the public. The three parts, and their stocks, were quickly nicknamed "meatball," "golf ball" and "goofball." Now Ling is cutting his meatball into hamburger. Five companies will be chopped out of Wilson's meat operations: Wilson Certified Foods, Wilson Beef & Lamb, Wilson Laurel Farms, Wilson-Sinclair and...

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