Acirca, Inc. yesterday announced it has acquired ShariAnn's Organics, the second largest ready-to-eat certified organic soup company in the United States.

Coupled with Acirca's existing Walnut Acres ready-to-eat organic soup business, the acquisition gives Acirca the leadership position in one of the highest growth segments of the $8 billion North American organic food and beverage category. ShariAnn's is a leading certified organic soup brand because of its award-winning recipes and flavors and strong distribution in natural supermarkets and gourmet stores nationwide.

Commenting on the acquisition, Acirca CEO Mark S. Rodriguez said, ``The addition of ShariAnn's helps us satisfy the needs of more health- and quality-conscious Americans with our great-tasting, certified organic products.''

ShariAnn's founder and CEO Ann Sinclair, who will remain as a consultant with Acirca, said, ``Joining forces with Acirca offers ShariAnn's the unique opportunity to build our brand faster than previously possible.''

Terms of the acquisition were not disclosed. This announcement by Acirca follows the acquisition, on October 2, 2001, of Mountain Sun, the nation's largest certified organic juice brand. Less than four months earlier, on June 11, 2001, Acirca acquired Frutti Di Bosco and Millina's Finest pasta sauces, the second largest certified organic pasta sauce business in the United States.

About Acirca and ShariAnn's

Acirca, Inc. was formed to develop premier certified organic food and beverage brands. The name Acirca is inspired by the phrase ``a circle of life'' and reflects the company's commitment to the development of products that contribute to better health and are good for the environment. Acirca is a privately held company owned collectively by company employees and independent investors. Acirca is bringing new consumers of organic products convenience in packaged certified organic foods wherever they shop.

The company produces Walnut Acres certified organic soups and salsas, Mountain Sun certified organic juices and Millina's Finest and Frutti Di Bosco certified organic pasta sauces. The chef-inspired recipes of all Acirca products are made only with the freshest ingredients available and never contain artificial additives or preservatives.

ShariAnn's is dedicated to: making healthy gourmet foods that are beneficial to people's health and the earth; aggressive marketing; innovative new recipes and product offerings; and an ethical commitment to supporting a sustainable food system.