June 22/Downers Grove, Ill./Feedstuffs -- Sara Lee Corp. plans to spin off only its international beverage business when it separates into two independent companies later this year or early next year, company executives told an investors conference.

Chair Jan Bennink and chief executive officer Marcel Smits said separation planning is progressing well, and a decision has been made to spin off the beverage business, which is mostly coffee and tea, and maintain its North America foodservice and retail business as Sara Lee. The company had originally planned to spin off both businesses.

Sara Lee then would house desserts and processed meats, including its Ball Park, Hillshire Farm and Jimmy Dean brands, and Smits said the company would begin focusing on convenience and "better-for-you" products.

 

From the June 23, 2011, Prepared Foods' Daily News.