April 6/Smithfield, Va./The Associated Press -- Smithfield Foods Inc. is in talks to buy a controlling interest of the European packaged meats company Campofrio Food Group SA for 9.5 euros ($13.62) per share.

Smithfield, a pork processor and hog producer, and Campofrio Chairman Pedro Ballve are considering takeover bid for an approximately 50% stake of Campofrio. Smithfield currently owns 37% of the business.

No financing arrangements have been finalized, but Smithfield said it expects the estimated 500 million euros ($716.7 million) needed for the offer would be provided through a combination of existing liquidity and capital market financings.

Last month, Smithfield Foods reported that its third-quarter net income climbed on strong pork demand and the benefit of a large insurance claim recovery. However, the company also said it would likely face higher costs over the summer, which will mean higher pork prices for consumers.

From the April 7, 2011, Prepared Foods' Daily News