The chief executive officer of Sara Lee North America said the company plans to continue to evolve its four major meat product brands while placing emphasis on more convenience and more premium products according to

Speaking on a teleconference in New York, CJ Fraleigh noted the company has evolved its meat business away from commodity meats for food service and retail into higher-value branded products. Sara Lee owns the Sara Lee, Jimmy Dean, Hillshire Farms and Ball Park brands.

Sara Lee plans to extend the Hillshire Farms product line with more convenience items with varied package sizes and more upscale items. Similarly, the Ball Park brand product line will be extended with more premium Angus-beef products, said Fraleigh. The Jimmy Dean Brand will continue to expand with more breakfast convenience items.

The company also will remain aggressive in reducing SKUs by continually culling items, says Sara Lee Chairman and CEO Brenda Barnes. She said she is committed reducing production costs.

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