October 5, 2021
Cal-Maine Foods announces strategic investment in new egg products manufacturing company
Cal-Maine Foods, Inc. announced on October 4 that the company's board of directors has approved a strategic investment that will specialise in high value commercial product solutions targeting specific needs in the food industry.
The initial focus will include hard-cooked and extended shelf-life egg product lines. The new entity, located in Neosho, Missouri, the United States, will operate as MeadowCreek Foods, LLC.
Cal-Maine Foods will capitalise MeadowCreek with up to US$18.5 million in debt and equity to purchase property and equipment and to fund working capital.
The company will retain a controlling interest in the venture. The MeadowCreek management team will be led by Ronald B. Bennett. Cal-Maine Foods will serve as the preferred provider to supply specialty and conventional eggs that MeadowCreek needs to manufacture egg products.
MeadowCreek’s marketing plan will expand Cal-Maine Food’s reach in the foodservice and retail marketplace and bring new opportunities in the restaurant, institutional and industrial food products arena.
Bennett, who will serve as president of MeadowCreek, brings 30 years of egg industry experience to the new venture. He most recently joined with DeJong Operational Management & Consulting to create, develop and install operational improvements and solutions to high value ready-to-eat food and biotech companies.
Previously, Bennett served as chief operating officer of Prime Foods from 2011 to 2019. He also served as director of egg products at Moark, LLC, which he joined in 1998. He began his career in the egg products division of Cal-Maine Foods in 1991.
Commenting on the announcement, Dolph Baker, chairman and chief executive officer of Cal-Maine Foods, Inc., said: "We are pleased to announce our strategic investment in MeadowCreek, which provides Cal-Maine Foods an opportunity to not only grow our presence in the egg products sector, but position ourselves to better seek out solutions for economically feeding a growing world population.
"While approximately 30% of produced eggs are currently directed to further processing in the US, as specialty eggs become more popular, we see the demand for more specialty egg products including cage-free products, to provide for industrial, food service and retail needs. We believe MeadowCreek will play an important role in meeting this demand and look forward to our partnership with Ronald and his operations team in support of this venture."