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Gay Lea Foods Completes the Acquisition of Western Creamery

Gay Lea Foods Co-operative Limited (“Gay Lea Foods”) confirmed today that it has completed an agreement with General Mills Incorporated (“General Mills”) to acquire the operations of Western Creamery.

Located in North York, Ontario, Western Creamery makes a variety of high-quality cultured dairy products, including natural yogurts, cream cheese spreads, pressed cottage cheeses and sour creams.

“Our co-operative took another important step forward today as we continue to grow Gay Lea Foods into a strong, sustainable Canadian foods business that delivers innovative, market-driven dairy products,” said Gay Lea Foods Chair, Rob Goodwill.

The acquisition expands Gay Lea Foods’ presence in the Canadian dairy market and adds Western Creamery’s line of fresh, natural products to the co-operative’s product mix, including – for the first time – pressed cottage cheeses and cream cheese spreads.

“This acquisition supports our co-operative’s plans to grow our presence in the Canadian dairy and food industry and, specifically, develop new markets with new products and customers,” said Michael Barrett, President & CEO of Gay Lea Foods.  “We look forward to new opportunities as we continue to grow our portfolio of award-winning Canadian dairy brands while providing exceptional service to our customers.”

Gay Lea Foods and General Mills have committed to ensuring a smooth transition for employees, customers and suppliers, with a pre-negotiated 60-day Transitional Services Agreement (TSA) coming into effect upon the close of the agreement.

QUICK FACTS

  • Western Creamery has close to 40 employees who produce a variety of natural yogurts, cream cheese spreads, pressed cottage cheeses and sour creams. All Western Creamery products are certified kosher.
  • Gay Lea Foods is a leading Canadian co-operative with members on more than 1,400 dairy farms across Ontario and Manitoba, more than 4,320 producer and investor shareholders, and close to 1,000 employees.
  • Gay Lea Foods has grown steadily in recent years and made a number of acquisitions across Ontario and Calgary, Alberta.
  • The co-operative has recently invested hundreds of millions of dollars to upgrade and expand its dairy and food facilities and business across Canada.

CONTACT

Robin Redstone, Communications Manager, Gay Lea Foods Co-operative Limited | (905) 399-0403 | rredstone@gayleafoods.com


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