PITTSBURGH & CHICAGO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The Kraft Heinz Company (Nasdaq: KHC) (“Kraft Heinz” or the “Company”) and Simplot Food Group, a division of the J.R. Simplot Company (“Simplot”), announced today that the two companies have signed a long-term agreement naming Simplot as the exclusive manufacturer and supplier of Ore-Ida. Kraft Heinz will continue to own the Ore-Ida brand.
As a leading expert in potato manufacturing and distribution, Simplot is expected to help grow the Ore-Ida brand by introducing world-class innovation and technology to the business as well as creating greater efficiencies through vertical integration, including supplying potatoes for the brand starting with the 2023/24 crop season. As part of the agreement, Kraft Heinz will transfer ownership of its potato manufacturing facility in Ontario, Ore., to Simplot, with Simplot committing to make capital investments as needed to meet elevated demand. The handover of the site is anticipated in the second quarter of 2022. The Ontario facility currently employs approximately 600 people. Simplot will offer positions to individuals at the facility, with the employees receiving pay and benefits comparable to that provided to similarly situated Simplot employees.
Privately held and headquartered in Boise, Idaho, Simplot has nearly a century of experience and is a leader in the global food and agriculture industries. Simplot has unmatched capabilities in potato battering, frying, and hold times, making them the ideal partner for Ore-Ida, the leader in quality, at-home frozen potatoes. Additionally, Simplot’s values align perfectly with those of Kraft Heinz, as both are committed to making responsibly sourced, high-quality, great-tasting foods and taking care of the communities where they operate.
“Consumer demand for our delicious Ore-Ida potato dishes remains high, proving there is substantial opportunity to grow the current portfolio of products while also introducing new and exciting foods from the brand,” said Renee Peets, senior vice president, North America Procurement at Kraft Heinz. “Today, Ore-Ida is approximately half a billion dollars in terms of net sales and we believe there’s still a lot of untapped growth. The expertise and innovation that the J.R. Simplot Company will bring to the brand is unrivaled, and thanks to our exclusive strategic supply partnership, we’ll now be able to bring new and expanded offerings from Ore-Ida to market faster than we ever have before.”
“The Ore-Ida brand is well-known and loved, and we’re thrilled to help ensure the continued success of this iconic family favorite through our Kraft Heinz partnership,” said Mark McKellar, president of Simplot’s Food Group. “With our combined history of making and serving high-quality frozen potato products and our shared dedication to the communities where we operate and the customers we serve, we have a bright future in front of us.”
Since 2020, Kraft Heinz has taken multiple steps to transform its overall growth profile, strategic focus, and financial flexibility. The exclusive supply agreement is another example of how Kraft Heinz is using agile portfolio management to improve its growth trajectory.
ABOUT THE KRAFT HEINZ COMPANY
We are driving transformation at The Kraft Heinz Company (Nasdaq: KHC), inspired by our Purpose, Let's Make Life Delicious. Consumers are at the center of everything we do. With 2021 net sales of approximately $26 billion, we are committed to growing our iconic and emerging food and beverage brands on a global scale. We leverage our scale and agility to unleash the full power of Kraft Heinz across a portfolio of six consumer-driven product platforms. As global citizens, we're dedicated to making a sustainable, ethical impact while helping feed the world in healthy, responsible ways. Learn more about our journey by visiting www.kraftheinzcompany.com or following us on LinkedIn and Twitter.
ABOUT THE J.R. SIMPLOT COMPANY
The J.R. Simplot Company is a family-owned, privately held global food and agriculture company headquartered in Boise, Idaho. Its integrated portfolio includes food processing and food brands, phosphate mining, fertilizer manufacturing, farming, ranching and cattle production, and other enterprises related to agriculture. Simplot has major operations in the U.S., Canada, Mexico, Argentina, Australia, and China, with products and services available to customers worldwide. For more information, visit www.simplot.com.
This press release contains a number of forward-looking statements. Words such as “create,” “include,” “will,” “transform,” “commit,” “improve,” “make,” “grow,” “leverage,” “invest,” and variations of such words and similar future or conditional expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements. These statements are not historical facts and are based on the Company’s current beliefs, expectations, estimates, and projections. These forward-looking statements are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties, many of which are difficult to predict and beyond the Company’s control, which could cause actual results to differ materially from those indicated in the forward-looking statements. Those factors include, but are not limited to, the risk factors set forth in the Company’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including the Company’s most recently filed Annual Report on Form 10-K and subsequent reports on Forms 10-Q and 8-K. The Company disclaims and does not undertake any obligation to update, revise, or withdraw any forward-looking statement in this press release, except as required by applicable law or regulation.