Quebec poultry co-op to buy P+H’s Butterball business


Winnipeg agrifood firm Parrish and Heimbecker has signed a deal to shed its P+H Foods poultry processing business, which includes the Canadian business for the U.S. turkey brand Butterball.

Exceldor, a Levis, Que.-based poultry producers’ processing co-operative, announced Thursday it will expand its market reach across Canada by buying the P+H Foods business for an undisclosed sum.

The deal, expected to close in the third calendar quarter of 2014, “gives us the opportunity not only to expand our operations outside the province of Quebec, but also integrate Butterball to our portfolio of existing brands in Canada,” Exceldor CEO Rene Proulx said in a release.

Exceldor will get P+H Foods’ primary turkey processing plant at Hanover, Ont., about 100 km northwest of Kitchener, and a stake in the Golden Valley Farms further-processing plant at Arthur, Ont., about 65 km southeast of Hanover.

The Golden Valley turkey and chicken processing operation is a joint venture set up in 1989 between P+H Foods and Waterloo, Ont.-based sausage and deli meat processor Piller’s Fine Foods, a subsidiary of Premium Brands.

P+H Foods, based in Mississauga, Ont., produces and sells products such as whole turkeys, turkey roasts, turkey franks, turkey burgers and turkey bacon for the Canadian market under a licensing agreement with Butterball’s North Carolina-based parent firm.

The U.S. parent firm, co-owned by Maxwell Farms and Seaboard Corp., is the biggest producer of turkey products in that country, producing about a billion pounds of turkey per year through five plants in in North Carolina, Arkansas and Missouri.

Exceldor, which processes 1.4 million chickens and turkeys per week at four Quebec plants, employing 1,400 people and generating $500 million in revenues annually, expects to boost those revenues to over $625 million through the P+H deal.

“We are excited about the growth opportunities we foresee with the Butterball brand, positioning Exceldor to be the market leader in the turkey processing industry in Canada,” Proulx said, noting Exceldor plans to “operate and enhance” the P+H facilities.

P+H Foods’ president, Paul Borg, said the subsidiary’s 400 employees “look forward to becoming members of the Exceldor team.” — Network



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