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Tyson acquires maker of Mexican foods

Tyson buys handheld Mexican food manufacturer Circle Foods.

Tyson Foods Inc. today reported the acquisition of Circle Foods LLC, a manufacturer of frozen and refrigerated handheld Mexican foods, including burritos, chimichangas, enchiladas, quesadillas, tacos and tamales. The acquisition also includes Indian flatbreads and uncooked tortillas.

The acquisition, from Claridge Inc., was completed June 1, the announcement said. Terms were not released.

Circle Foods, headquartered in San Diego, Cal., has been in business for 25 years and markets under the Nuevo Grille, Tortillaland and Rotiland Indian flatbreads brands. The company has a modern plant in San Diego and employs 600 people.

Tyson said it intends to retain the existing management and production team and does not plan any "significant" change in operations.

Circle Foods "will be an excellent fit within our branded consumer products group" and will expand Tyson's value-added foods portfolio, said Tyson chief executive officer and president Donnie Smith.

"We believe that our robust sales structure, as well as our frozen and refrigerated foods distribution system, will enable this business to accelerate its growth," Smith said.

Claridge is an equity investment firm headquartered in Montreal, Que.

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