Canada's largest private poultry processor and a company representing producers in Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island have teamed up to buy the Maple Leaf Foods facility in Berwick.
Value of the transaction, expected to close May 13, was not disclosed in Friday's announcement.
Maple Leaf announced the closure of its prepared meats plant in Berwick last November, with production scheduled to end April 29.
The buyer is Eden Valley Poultry, a new poultry processing company made up of United Poultry Producers Inc, owned by poultry producers in Nova Scotia and P.E.I. and privately owned Maple Lodge Holding Corp..
"We are very pleased to have reached this agreement that will result in the plant being converted into a new poultry primary processing facility," said Rick Young, executive vice-president, transformation, Maple Leaf Consumer Foods.
"This is a very positive outcome which will bring new opportunities for people currently employed at Berwick and the community of King's County. It also fulfills the commitment we made last November to find an alternate use for the plant that would leverage the benefits of the existing facility."
Immediately upon closure of the transaction, Eden Valley Poultry will begin decommissioning the Maple Leaf facility, with construction and retrofitting to commence as soon as possible.
The new facility is expected to be operational by early summer 2012, processing more than 40 million kilograms of poultry annually and employing about 200 people.
Maple Leaf Foods Inc., with annual sales of some $5-billion, is a leading Canadian food processing company headquartered in Toronto. It employs 21,000 people at operations across Canada and in the United States, Europe and Asia.
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