Multinat'l food giant acquires organic, natural frozen meals maker
ConAgra says Blake's All Natural Foods 'a great addition' to existing frozen meals business

 Sustainable Food News , May 13, 2015

ConAgra Foods, Inc. said Tuesday it has acquired Blake’s All Natural Foods, a maker of natural and organic frozen meals, including pot pies, casseroles, pasta dishes and other entrees.

Omaha, Neb.-based ConAgra (NYSE: CAG) did not disclose the terms of the all-cash deal.

Investment banking firm Silverwood Partners initiated the transaction and was Blake's exclusive financial advisor.

Concord, N.H.-based Blake's is a fourth-generation, family-owned producer of frozen meals made with certified-organic and natural ingredients - including Gluten-Free Chicken Pot Pie, Upside Down Chicken & Waffle Pie, Harvest Vegetable Pie, and Farmhouse Shepherd’s Pie - sold at retailers nationwide.

"Blake’s is a great addition to our existing frozen meals business and provides more choices to a growing group of people buying natural and organic foods," said Sean Connolly, ConAgra CEO.

ConAgra cited IRI sales data showing the natural and organic frozen single-serve meals category grew by more than 33 percent between 2011 and 2015.

ConAgra sells several frozen food brands, including Alexia, Healthy Choice, Marie Callender’s, Banquet, Kid Cuisine, Bertolli, Odom’s Tennessee Pride and P.F. Chang’s.

"Natural and organic food has clearly earned a place in American households, and we will continue to make the same meals that the Blake family has made for people over four generations," said Blake's CEO Chris Licata, who will continue to lead the business from its headquarters, where it employs 60

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