COLLINGSWOOD, N.J. – Forming what is claimed to be one of the largest vertically integrated veal and lamb purveyors in the country, four companies have joined forces to supply the retail and foodservice segments as part of a soon-to-be-named holding company.

In an effort to control its products from farm to fork, officials from Catelli Brothers, Inc., Delimax Veal, Inc., NRV and Specialty Meats, Inc. have merged and will each maintain their corporate identity while expanding their collective reach to facilitate national distribution. The merger is effective immediately and a finalized name for the new venture is expected in early 2010. The veal and lamb product brands will include Catelli Brothers, Catelli Brothers Italian Bistro, Lido Gourmet, Chef’s Reserve, and Summit Ridge.?

"We’re excited to be merging with companies who share our longstanding dedication to quality and service," said Tony Catelli, president and chief executive of Catelli Brothers, Inc., a processor of veal and domestic as well as imported lamb for retailers and foodservice operators. "They, like us, are family-oriented businesses and have worked hard to earn a reputation for producing the highest-quality products using industry-leading food safety and traceability standards."

"This merger will create a stronger organization that allows us to expand products and services, both regionally and nationally, better positioning us for the future," said Jonathan Amidei, executive vice-president and chief operating officer of Specialty Meats, an integrated producer of milk-fed veal and lamb from its facility near Los Angeles.?

"This merger will help ensure a vibrant market for our feed customers and will position us to extend the market for milk-fed calves," said Dale Bakke, general manager of NRV, a producer of milk replacers and feed supplements to cattle farmers. "We are looking forward to working with our new partners to continue to evolve and grow our business."

Delimax Veal is an animal-welfare-focused, milk-fed veal producer led by its president, Robert Wynands. "Our farms add supply strength to this new company which we fully expect will become an increasingly important factor for the national retail and food service marketplace," Mr. Wynands said.