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    Sara Lee Expands Meat Snacks Business

    The addition of Trail's Best brand strengthens company's position in thriving category.

    CHICAGO

    Sara Lee Corp. said yesterday it agreed to acquire the assets of FHS Inc., a private holding company that owns Trail's Best Snacks Inc., the fourth largest producer of meat snacks in the United States. The terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

    Trail's Best Snacks, which includes Trail's Best and Happy Trails brands, also currently produces the Jimmy Dean brand of meat snacks for Sara Lee Foods. With this transaction, Sara Lee also acquires Huisken Meats, Inc., a producer of frozen meat products.

    "Meat snacks sales have been increasing at a double-digit rate for the last eight years, and the acquisition of Trail's Best Snacks supports Sara Lee's strategy to develop leading positions in growth segments of our core categories," said C. Steven McMillan, chairman, president and CEO of Sara Lee. "With the acquisition of Trail's Best Snacks, Sara Lee gains additional brands in this booming category, and adds a strong growth platform for extending the Jimmy Dean brand."

    Sara Lee entered the meat snacks category earlier this year with the introduction of Jimmy Dean meat snacks in select markets.

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