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TreeHouse Foods Taps Smucker's Oakland as CEO; Smucker May Sell Baking Brands

By Lauren R. Hartman, Product Development Editor

Mar 12, 2018

As we reported last week, Steve Oakland, a former J.M. Smucker executive, was named president and CEO of private-label food company TreeHouse Foods, Oak Brook, Ill., March 26. Oakland joined the board of the Illinois-based company on March 2, TreeHouse announced March 5.

Oakland was most recently the vice chair and president of U.S. food and beverage at the J.M. Smucker Co., an Orrville, Ohio, $5-billion business. Oakland was in charge of retail coffee, consumer foods, natural foods, U.S. retail sales and marketing services for Smucker, TreeHouse said.

Meanwhile, Oakland's former employer, Smucker, is considering selling its baking brands, reports indicate, including Pillsbury. Smucker is working with an adviser in weighing its options for the unit, which includes Robin Hood flour and cereal and Martha White baking mixes, according to sources familiar with the matter. Smucker hasn't make a final decision to pursue a sale yet or keep the unit, they said.

Smucker bought the Pillsbury baking mix brand, represented by its iconic Pillsbury Doughboy, in 2004 as part of an its acquisition of Multifoods Corp. The deal added several center-store brands such as muffin mixes and frostings to the Smucker lineup.