Patrick Cudahy, a subsidiary of US meat processor Smithfield Foods has acquired all assets of 814 Americas Inc from Spanish food company Campofrio Alimentacion.

With this move Patrick Cudahy is tapping into the fast growing US Hispanic ethnic market segment, currently estimated to be in excess of $686 billion annually.

With over 30 successful years serving the Hispanic audiences with chorizo, traditional Dominican and other Caribbean salamis, sausage and other prepared meat specialties, 814 Americas, Inc. has been ranked as the 'Most Recognized Line' by the US Association of Latin American Consumers, the company said. Now, with Hispanic and Caribbean menu items becoming increasingly mainstream, the demand for these specialty sausage products is growing even more aggressively in both retail and foodservice venues.

"By 2009, Hispanics will make up 9% of US purchasing power. This is a market we want to continue to build on with a diverse line of quality products that meet the needs of today's Hispanic consumer. The brand recognition and reputation 814 Americas has for quality makes them an ideal component for Patrick Cudahy's growing Hispanic product portfolio," said Bill Otis, president and chief operating officer of Patrick Cudahy.

"814 Americas will continue to operate as an independent company backed by the full resources of Patrick Cudahy," he said. "They will be focusing on developing and marketing their current major brands; including El Mino Chorizos, Salami Higueral, Salchichon Cervecero and their other high-profile Hispanic market favorites. They will also be working closely, in the future, with Patrick Cudahy to help extend these popular brands into new markets."