TORONTO, July 22, 2013 /CNW/ - Maple Leaf Foods (MFI: TSX) today announced that it has entered into definitive agreements to sell the Company's commercial turkey farms to Ernald Enterprises Limited and its breeder farms and hatchery operation to Cuddy Farms Limited. The transactions are expected to close by the end of July.
Maple Leaf's turkey growing operations employ more than 100 employees in southern Ontario. They include a hatchery and six breeder farms that supply turkey eggs and poults (day-old turkeys) to domestic and international markets and six commercial farms that supply market-ready live birds to Maple Leaf's turkey processing facility in Thamesford, Ontario. The terms of the transaction include a long-term supply of live birds to Maple Leaf from Ernald Enterprises. The vast majority of employees will transition to Ernald Enterprises and Cuddy Farms once the transactions close.
"Divesting our turkey growing operations will allow us to focus on, and direct capital to, growth and innovation in our valued added turkey processing business," said Michael H. McCain, President and CEO, Maple Leaf Foods. "The transaction ensures a long-term supply of high quality turkeys at competitive prices. I'd like to thank our people who work in these operations for their dedication to our business. They are joining two organizations who are leaders in Canada's turkey growing industry."Cuddy Farms is a leading producer and distributor of commercial turkey eggs and poults in Canada. The Company distributes products nationally and to more than twenty countries including Germany, Mexico, Russia, Italy, Turkey, Poland, Austria, Holland, Hungary and the Baltic States. Ernald Enterprises Ltd. owns 1,200 acres of agricultural land and operates five commercial turkey and chicken growing operations in southern Ontario. They are a current supplier to Maple Leaf Foods' turkey processing operations. Maple Leaf Foods Inc. is a leading food company headquartered in Toronto, Canada. The Company employs approximately 19,500 people at its operations across Canada and in the United States, the United Kingdom and Asia. The Company had sales of $4.9 billion in 2012. SOURCE Maple Leaf Foods Inc.