Austin, Minnesota-based meat processor Hormel Foods Corp has signed an agreement to form a joint venture with sector rival Cargill's Excel Corp. to market and distribute meat products to supermarkets and club stores across the US. In a press release yesterday [Thursday], the companies explained that the joint venture, to be called Precept Foods LLC, would see Homel and Excel supply case-ready pork and beef under Hormel's Always Tender national brand name.