US meat giant Tyson Foods has acquired local tortilla, salty snack and pretzel maker Don Julio Foods.

The deal expands Tyson's presence in the retail channel. Tyson is the second-largest tortilla maker in the US, although the majority of its sales are to foodservice customers. Don Julio supplies retailers throughout the US under the Don Julio Authentic and Clover Club brands.

"Don Julio is an example of a brand that's the right fit for Tyson Foods," president and CEO Donnie Smith said. "The people are great, the business expands on an existing tortilla business where we already have expertise and it will allow us to offer our retail customers another product with a loyal consumer following."

Don Julio's existing management team will remain in place. The financial details of the deal were not disclosed.

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Tyson Foods Acquires Assets of Don Julio Foods of Utah
Tyson Foods Acquires Assets of Don Julio Foods of Utah Deal Includes Retail Branded Tortilla, Chip and Snack Business 

SPRINGDALE, Ark., Feb. 15, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Donnie Smith, president and CEO of Tyson Foods, Inc. (NYSE:TSN), today announced its subsidiary company, Tyson Mexican Original, Inc., has acquired the assets of Don Julio Foods of Clearfield, Utah. The deal is an example of the company's overall growth strategy. Don Julio, a maker of flour and corn tortillas, and salty snacks such as potato chips, tortilla chips and pretzels, sells products to retailers throughout the U.S. under the Don Julio Authentic and Clover Club brands.

Tyson Mexican Original is the second largest manufacturer of tortillas in the U.S. A majority of its sales are currently with foodservice customers; however the acquisition will put the company's products on grocery store shelves throughout the U.S.

"Don Julio is an example of a brand that's the right fit for Tyson Foods," Smith said. "The people are great, the business expands on an existing tortilla business where we already have expertise and it will allow us to offer our retail customers another product with a loyal consumer following."

The management team - which includes Nate Fisher, son of company founder, Craig Fisher - will continue to manage the operation. Don Julio employs about 50 people, the majority of whom are expected to become Tyson team members.

The acquisition includes all brands marketed by Don Julio, equipment and related assets. Financial terms of the deal are not being disclosed.
Entrepreneur Craig Fisher created Don Julio Foods in 1994 as a line of chip, tortilla and dip products. Production was outsourced until 2002 when Fisher and his son opened the tortilla manufacturing plant in Clearfield. Soon after beginning to make their own products, the company acquired Clover Club Foods, the same company where Craig Fisher began his career in the food business the 1980s. Most of the company's salty snacks are marketed under the Clover Club brand. Don Julio and Clover Club products are distributed nationwide at national and regional retail grocery stores.

Tyson Foods purchased Mexican Original, Inc. in 1983 to diversify its product offerings. Prior to the Don Julio acquisition, the company operated three dedicated tortilla operations in Fayetteville, Ark., Portland, Ind., and Sanford, N.C. Mexican Original tortillas and chips are sold to foodservice and restaurant customers. About 1,300 team members work for Mexican Original.

"We are excited to have the Don Julio folks join our Tyson Foods team," said Richard Irvin, manager of operations for Mexican Original. "We look forward to working with them and helping them grow the Don Julio and Clover Club brands."

Tyson Foods, Inc. (NYSE:TSN), founded in 1935 with headquarters in Springdale, Arkansas, is one of the world's largest processors and marketers of chicken, beef and pork, the second-largest food production company in the Fortune 500 and a member of the S&P 500. The company produces a wide variety of protein-based and prepared food products and is the recognized market leader in the retail and foodservice markets it serves. Tyson provides products and services to customers throughout the United States and approximately 130 countries. The company has approximately 115,000 Team Members employed at more than 400 facilities and offices in the United States and around the world. Through its Core Values, Code of Conduct and Team Member Bill of Rights, Tyson strives to operate with integrity and trust and is committed to creating value for its shareholders, customers and Team Members. The company also strives to be faith-friendly, provide a safe work environment and serve as stewards of the animals, land and environment entrusted to it.

 

Original source: Tyson Foods