Del Monte sells US vegetable business


DUAL listed fruit canner Del Monte Pacific Ltd. (DMPL) announced on Friday that its US subsidiary Del Monte Foods, Inc. (DMFI) had sold its Sager Creek vegetable business in the US for $55 million, in line with its goal to focus on its core business.

DMFI sold its Sager Creek business to McCall Farms, Inc., DMPL said in a filing to the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE).

The Sager Creek business produces specialty vegetables for the food service and retail markets and manufactures several brands, including Veg-all, Freshlike, Popeye, Princella, Trappey’s and Allens.

McCall Farms is a US-based firm manufacturing brands such as Bruce’s Yams, Margaret Holmes, and Glory Foods.

“This divesture allows us to focus our energy and resources on strengthening our core business, driving innovation, and exploring new products that meet the evolving needs of today’s consumer,” DMFI Chief Operating Officer David Meyers said in the disclosure.

As a result of the sale, one manufacturing plant in Siloam Springs in Arkansas in the US will immediately cease operations.

“DMFI will continue to be the point of service for all retail and foodservice customers of Sager Creek through early 2018, and will work closely with McCall Farms to support a seamless transition to McCall’s organization,” the company said.

For the first quarter of its fiscal year 2018, the parent company announced it returned t profit on the back of the robust performance of its Asian businesses. DMPL achieved a net income of $700,000 for its fiscal first quarter ending July, reversing the $7 million loss recorded in the comparable quarter last year.

Sales in the quarter reached $473.8 million, higher by 1 percent from last year, driven by the strong performance of its Asian and Middle East businesses, which offset lower sales in the United States.
DMPL is the first Philippine-based company to be listed on two stock exchanges and be approved by local regulators to sell dollar-denominated securities.


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