JBS to acquire XL Foods' Canadian ops

by Meat&Poultry Staff
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GREELEY, Colo. – JBS USA announced its Canadian subsidiary, JBS Food Canada Inc., will acquire some XL Foods operations effective Jan. 14.

JBS Food Canada will own the Brooks, Alberta-based XL Lakeside beef processing plant. XL purchased the plant from Tyson Foods in 2009. JBS took over management of the plant in October, following the largest beef recall in Canada’s history. The plant has the capacity to process 4,000 head of cattle daily. It is one of Canada’s largest processing facilities and one of the largest employers in southern Alberta, according to JBS. Under the agreement, JBS Foods Canada will also acquire a beef packing plant in Calgary, Alta.; a feedlot in Brooks, and the adjacent farmland acreage supporting the feedlot operation. The company will not assume any of XL Foods’ debt or liabilities.

In December, Alberta’s provincial government approved an exemption paving the way for JBS Food Canada to buy XL Foods’ Canadian operations.

“Today, JBS officially enters the Canadian beef market through our acquisition of the XL Lakeside beef packing plant,” said Bill Rupp, president and COO of JBS USA Beef. “After several months of careful consideration of the option and nearly three months of successfully managing the Lakeside facility, we have determined that the Canadian operations will serve as an important asset to our strategic global beef production model. We look forward to partnering with Canadian producers to deliver quality Canadian beef to customers around the world.”

The agreement between JBS and XL Foods also provides JBS USA an exclusive option to purchase the XL Foods' US operations. The deal is subject to regulatory review from US authorities, the company said. However, this option has met with some resistance. The National Farmers Union and a coalition of 40 agricultural organizations recently asked the US Department of Justice to investigate the deal.

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