AUSTIN, Minn. — Hormel Foods Corporation (NYSE: HRL), a global branded food company, and WholeStone Farms, announced today that they have entered into a definitive agreement to sell the Hormel Foods Fremont, Neb., processing facility to WholeStone Farms, LLC. The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions and is expected to be completed in December 2018.
"The Fremont facility has been an important part of our company for decades, and we are certainly pleased to have found a home for this team and facility with WholeStone Farms," said Jim Snee, chairman of the board, president and chief executive officer at Hormel Foods. "The strategic decision to transition the Fremont facility to WholeStone Farms reflects the long-term, changing dynamics in the pork industry, and most importantly, is aligned with our vision as a global branded food company."
"We look forward to working with WholeStone Farms to ensure a smooth transition for our employees, suppliers and customers," said Glenn Leitch, executive vice president of supply chain at Hormel Foods. "A multiyear supply agreement with WholeStone Farms ensures the Fremont facility will continue as an integral part of our supply chain in the future. Our focus continues to be on ensuring a stronger supply chain from procurement to shipment of products, fully optimizing our system to create an efficient, enterprise-wide structure to keep pace with the growing needs of our business."
"The purchase of the Fremont, Neb., processing facility from Hormel Foods aligns with our vision to create and capture value in the pork supply chain for the 220 independent producers who own WholeStone Farms," stated Dr. Luke Minion, chairman of the board of directors of WholeStone Farms. "We value the dedication and experience the existing team brings to WholeStone Farms, and are committed to significant additional investments in the facility for production efficiencies and enhancing employee wellness."
The transaction includes a processing facility and a multiyear agreement to supply pork raw materials to Hormel Foods. The current Fremont plant management team and workforce will remain in place to ensure business continuity for all stakeholders. More information will be provided during the Hormel Foods Third Quarter Earnings Conference Call on Thursday, August 23, 2018, at 8:00 a.m. CT (9:00 a.m. ET).
About Hormel Foods – Inspired People. Inspired Food.™
Hormel Foods Corporation, based in Austin, Minn., is a global branded food company with over $9 billion in annual revenues across 75 countries worldwide. Its brands include SKIPPY®, SPAM®, Hormel® Natural Choice®, Applegate®, Justin's®, Columbus®, Wholly Guacamole®, Hormel® Black Label® and more than 30 other beloved brands. The company is a member of the S&P 500 Index and the S&P 500 Dividend Aristocrats, was named one of "The 100 Best Corporate Citizens" by Corporate Responsibility Magazine for the 10th year in a row, and has received numerous other awards and accolades for its corporate responsibility and community service efforts. In 2016, the company celebrated its 125th anniversary and announced its new vision for the future — Inspired People. Inspired Food.™ — focusing on its legacy of innovation. For more information, visit www.hormelfoods.com and https://csr.hormelfoods.com/.
About WholeStone Farms
WholeStone Farms was established in 2017 to create and capture value in the pork supply chain. WholeStone Farms is owned by our 220 members who are independent producers and farmers raising livestock and crops in the upper Midwest. We collectively farm nearly 400,000 acres of cropland, raise 12 million pigs a year, and share a vision to continue the legacy of family farming. With over 1,000 family members involved and 25% on their fourth generation, we are proud of what we do, the food we produce, and we are deeply committed to sustainable agriculture and the rural communities we live in. For more information, visit www.wholestonefarms.com.
HORMEL FOODS FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS
This news release contains forward-looking information based on management's current views and assumptions. Actual events may differ materially. Factors that may affect actual results include, but are not limited to: whether and when the required regulatory approvals will be obtained, whether and when the closing conditions will be satisfied, and whether and when the transaction will close. Please refer to the cautionary statement regarding Forward-Looking Statements and Risk Factors that appears on pages 34-40 in the Hormel Foods Form 10-Q for the fiscal quarter ended April 29, 2018, which can be accessed at www.hormelfoods.com under "Investors-SEC Filings."
Source:Hormel Foods Corporation