Smithfield Foods has completed the acquisition of Packerland Holdings, Green Bay, Wis. – the 5th largest U.S. beef processor. The deal involved a purchase price of $250 million, including debt assumption. Packerland was a privately held company with a daily processing capacity of 6,150 head.

Rich Vesta, Packerland’s president, will head Smithfield’s new beef division. As Smithfield’s new president, C. Larry Pope, will manage all meat processing and pork production operations.

In June, Smithfield added Moyer Packing, and its 2,375-head daily capacity to its stable of companies. These two purchases not only put Smithfield into the beef market, but according to the company, Smithfield now controls 20 percent of total beef sales and a 7 percent share of the U.S. beef industry. Smithfield was already the world’s No. 1 pork producer and processor with a 20 percent share of the U.S. market.

Other Smithfield purchases this year have included further processing and case-ready facilities. “Smithfield Foods now has the capability to offer retailers in many parts of the country, case-ready pork and beef,” says Joe Luter, company chairman. “In addition, the complement of beef with pork should lessen the cyclical impact of processing margins on our overall results.”

Smithfield had started its bid to expand into other areas of meat production and processing earlier this year when it made a move for IBP. However Tyson Foods won that bid in a drawn-out purchase of IBP.

At the Worldwide Food Expo held in Mid-October in Chicago, Luter participated in a meat industry panel where he said Smithfield would “likely” be making additional acquisitions. He even suggested that two more such purchased could come within 30 days.
Smithfield news release