Pilgrim's Pride Corp. on Nov. 29 announced it will pay $350 million in cash for GNP Co., St. Cloud, Minn., the maker of Gold'n Plump and Just Bare chicken.
At an estimated $7 billion in sales, Pilgrim's Pride may be the nation's largest chicken processor. Sales of GNP were not disclosed, but it's strictly an upper Midwest supplier with 1,700 employees and plants in Cold Spring and Luverne, Minn., and Arcadia, Wis.
Pilgrim's Pride was majority-owned by the Pilgrim family but filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection and in late 2009 was bought by a subsidiary of Brazilian meat company JBS. Headquarters were moved from Pittsburg, Texas, to JBS offices in Greeley, Colo.
This is the second time Gold'n Plump has been sold in the past three years, according to an Associated Press story. One of the country's largest hog producers, Maschhoffs LLC, purchased the company from the founding Helgeson family in 2013 for an undisclosed price.