Perdue Farms was founded in 1920 by Arthur Perdue with his wife, Pearl Perdue who had been keeping a small flock of chickens. Their son, Frank, joined the company in 1939 at age 19 after dropping out of college.
Now recognized as a visionary, Frank Perdue's promotion of the Perdue brand through high-profile advertising resulted in its being the first well-known brand of chicken in the
Perdue Farms developed a specialized chicken-feed that included marigold blossoms, which imparted a characteristic golden yellow hue to the skins of his chickens.
In the 1980s the visionary Perdue twice sought assistance from then-Mafia boss Paul Castellano Sr. to fend off a union's effort to represent workers at his company, according to a federal commission on labor corruption.