Seneca has option to buy rest of business in future

Seneca has option to buy rest of business in future

US packaged fruit and veg supplier Seneca Foods is to buy a 50% stake in local shelf-stable foods supplier Truitt Bros.

Seneca has struck a deal to buy the 50% of the business owned by shareholder and co-founder Peter Truitt.

The agreement gives Seneca the option of acquiring the remaining 50% of Truitt Bros. from Peter's brother and fellow co-founder David Truitt - also the company's president and CEO - and other shareholders.

"Truitt Bros. is a leader in developing shelf-stable meals in trays and pouches," Kraig Kayser, Seneca's president and CEO, said.

The management of Truitt Bros. will remain unchanged. David Truitt added: "We have known Seneca for years, and share similar backgrounds and interests in food processing. We have high regards for their organization, and we look forward to the future with Seneca Foods being our partner."

In December, Seneca signed an agreement to buy US peer Allens, which was in Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, for US$148m.

Seneca's offer served as the "stalking-horse bid". The company said the deal was subject to court approval at a hearing due to be held "in the near future". No further statements have been made.