Tucson cannery to merge with Minneapolis company

2014-08-01T08:00:00Z 2014-08-01T22:29:52Z Tucson cannery to merge with Minneapolis companyBy David Wichner Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star

Mexico-based food packager Conservas La Costeña has acquired Minneapolis-based Faribault Foods and will merge the company with its Tucson-based Arizona Canning Co. operation.

The combined companies will operate as Faribault Foods and be headquartered in Minneapolis, but the merger will lead to increased production and employment at the Tucson plant, at 8755 S. Rita Road, a company official said. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed by the privately held companies.

Faribault Foods’ products include S&W canned beans, Butter Kernel, Kuner’s and Kuner’s Southwestern, Chilliman, Mrs. Grimes, Pride and KC Masterpiece baked beans, as well as a strong private label and contract manufacturing business with top branded companies. Arizona Canning’s products include Sun Vista, Luck’s, Kerns and Totis.

“This is an exciting day for Arizona Canning and Faribault Foods, as we merge our strong brand portfolios, enhance our leading market positions and broaden our geographic reach,” Albert Hoflack, president and CEO of Arizona Canning, said in a news release.

“We look forward to the growth opportunities that this combination will bring,” said Reid MacDonald, president and CEO of Faribault Foods.

As a result of the acquisition, Hoflack becomes president and CEO of Faribault Foods, and MacDonald will move into an advisory role. The current Faribault management, employees and facilities will be retained as part of the combined company’s operations, La Consteña said.

Faribault Foods’ operations will have about 700 total employees, with about 550 employees at three plants in Faribault, Cokato and Elk River, Minn.; and about 150 Arizona Canning employees, mostly in Tucson.

Hoflack was unavailable for comment Friday.

Elaine Jackson, human-resources director for Arizona Canning, said a couple of local executives may move to Minneapolis in the short term, but the merger will ultimately increase production volume and employment at the Tucson plant, which employs about 135 employees.

The company already has hired or promoted a dozen people to new positions, and new workers will be added gradually as production lines are reorganized, Jackson said.

Contact Assistant Business Editor David Wichner at dwichner@tucson.com or 573-4181.

Copyright 2014 Arizona Daily Star. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.