August 23, 2007/Business Wire/Austin, Minn. -- Hormel Foods Corporation announced it has purchased privately held Burke Corporation, a manufacturer and marketer of pizza-toppings and other fully cooked meat products, for approximately $110 million. The company anticipates annual net sales of $125 million and expects the deal to be accretive to its fiscal 2008 earnings.

"Hormel Foods is a leader in pepperoni, and the addition of Burke Corp. strengthens our position in the pizza-topping industry by expanding our offerings to foodservice customers," said Jeffrey M. Ettinger, chairman of the board, president and CEO, Hormel Foods. "This acquisition increases our production efficiencies and adds manufacturing capabilities, enabling Hormel Foods to grow in this important category."

Burke Corp. manufactures and markets pizza-toppings and other fully cooked meat products primarily for restaurants, foodservice establishments and manufacturers of frozen entrees and appetizers. Product lines include traditional pizza meat toppings, meatballs, Mexican meat fillings and breakfast meats.

"The cultural similarities between Hormel Foods and Burke Corp. made the decision to move forward with this transaction an easy one," said Bill Burke Jr. "Our new relationship with Hormel Foods will allow us to continue, and even strengthen, our focus on customers and fellow Team Members, who consistently produce high quality products."

Burke Corp. operates its main facility in Nevada, Iowa, and another in Ames, Iowa. These facilities increase Hormel Foods' production capabilities of fully-cooked meat products and pizza-toppings.

From the August 27, 2007, Prepared Foods e-Flash