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    Tyson Acquires Mexican Food Factory

    Deal continues company's expansion of its value-added foods portfolio.

    SPRINGDALE, Ark. -- Tyson Foods Inc. acquired the assets of Circle Foods LLC, a producer of Mexican foods, from Montreal investment firm Claridge. This continues the company's strategic expansion of its value-added foods portfolio.

    The deal, which gives Springdale, Ark.-based Tyson Foods a Mexican food factory in southern California, was completed on June 1. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

    According to a company news release, Tyson Foods does not plan any significant operational changes and intends to keep the existing Circle Foods management and production team in place to grow its business. The operation currently has approximately 600 full-time employees.

    "Claridge and the Circle Foods team have developed an outstanding portfolio of products and customers with a fantastic plant and workforce, and will be an excellent fit within our branded consumer products group," said Donnie Smith, president and CEO of Tyson Foods. "We believe Tyson's robust sales structure, as well as our frozen and refrigerated foods distribution system, will enable this business to accelerate its growth."

    Circle Foods' 159,000-square-foot facility in San Diego was built in 2008 and produces burritos, chimichangas, enchiladas, quesadillas, tacos and tamales, as well as tortillas and Indian flatbreads.

    "We are delighted to see the transition of Circle Foods to Tyson Foods, who is committed to continue the growth of the business. Right from the beginning when we met the Tyson people and organization, we knew we had an excellent partner we could work with on this transaction," said Stephen Bronfman, executive chairman of Claridge. "We are confident that Circle Foods will flourish under Tyson's ownership."

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