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Dean Foods to sell Morningstar Foods division to Saputo

BY Antoinette Alexander

DALLAS — Dean Foods has entered into a definitive agreement to sell its Morningstar Foods division to Saputo for $1.45 billion.

Morningstar Foods is a manufacturer of dairy and nondairy extended-shelf-life and cultured products, including creams and creamers, ice cream mixes, whipping cream, aerosol whipped toppings, iced coffee, half and half, value-added milks, sour cream and cottage cheese.

Gregg Tanner, CEO of Dean Foods, said that Dean Foods will use substantially all of the net proceeds from the sale to reduce outstanding debt and increase its flexibility to execute against its strategies for the core dairy business. As a result of the transaction, Dean Foods expects to realize $887 million in proceeds, net of taxes and expenses.

Assuming a fourth-quarter close, Dean Foods’ management expects its net debt to EBITDA ratio, as defined by its credit agreements, to be below 3.0x at year-end 2012.

As a condition of the sale, Dean Foods also entered into an agreement with WhiteWave Foods, a controlled subsidiary of the company, whereby WhiteWave will receive $60 million net of taxes as consideration for the termination of an option to purchase plant capacity and property at a Morningstar facility and the sale to Morningstar of certain manufacturing equipment located at another Morningstar plant. In addition, WhiteWave and Morningstar agreed to modify certain terms of existing intercompany commercial agreements between the two companies.

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Sabra introduces salsa and tortilla Grab N Go packs

BY Jason Owen

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. — “Eating on the go doesn’t have to be a struggle,” is the sentiment from Sabra’s brand manager, Janice Greenwald, as the company unveiled a salsa and tortilla chip pack, the latest addition to their popular Grab N Go line.

Comprising of Sabra’s Homestyle Medium Salsa and Tostitos Bite Size Rounds tortillas, Sabra hopes this new product will be as popular as its Grab N Go cups of classic, roasted garlic and roasted red pepper hummus paired with pretzels that they’ve offered since 2005.

“Since their initial launch,” Ms. Greenwald said, “the Grab N Go cups have been a customer favorite. Our fans have been clamoring for even more snack options that don’t require preparation. Made from delicious, ripe vegetables, Sabra Salsa was the natural choice for the new snack packs, and Tostitos tortilla chips are the perfect dippers.”

This is the first time Sabra has offered its salsa in a single serving size. All Sabra salsas are made from hand-selected tomatoes, and are combined with delicious, chunky vegetables, herbs and spices. The new offering will join Sabra’s family of refrigerated salsas, hummus, guacamole and Greek yogurt vegetable dips. Sabra Grab N Go packs can be found at supermarkets, convenience stores, airports, college campuses and club stores nationwide.

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Caffeine beyond coffee

BY Barbara White-Sax

PURCHASE, N.Y. — PepsiCo is planning a controversial line of products under its FritoLay brand. The new line, called Cracker Jack’d, is a caffeinated extension of its Cracker Jack line of popcorn clusters and is expected to hit shelves by the end of the 
fourth quarter.


The line extension is expected to include a caffeinated snack called Power Bites, which will contain approximately 70 mg of caffeine from coffee in each 2-oz. package. Snack mixes and popcorn clusters also will be included in the lineup.

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