Large Colorado company buys Gold'n Plump for $350M

The world's largest meat processor owns Colorado-based Pilgrim's Pride.
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St. Cloud-based Gold'n Plump is being sold to a company out in Colorado for $350 million, cash.

Pilgrim's Pride is based in Greeley, which is just northeast of Denver. The nation's second-largest poultry processing company announced Tuesday that it had reached a "definitive agreement" to acquire GNP – the Midwest's largest chicken processor.

Pilgrim's Chief Executive Officer Bill Lovette says this purchase will give the Colorado company access to "state-of-the-art assets in geographic areas where Pilgrim's is not currently present." Meaning Pilgrim's will be able to expand production as well as its customer base.

Pilgrim's Pride owned by the Brazilian company JBS S.A. It's the world's largest protein company.

The deal is expected to close within the first months of 2017.

What this means for Gold'n Plump

Gold'n Plump has about 1,700 employees and works with about 400 family farms.

It has production facilities in Minnesota – Cold Spring and Luverne – as well as in Arcadia, Wisconsin. Altogether, it processes about 9 million pounds per week, Twin Cities Business magazine reports. That's compared to Pilgrim's 142 million pounds a week.

The Star Tribune says it reached out to GNP in regards to what will happen with those facilities, and GNP declined to comment. Pilgrim's Pride told the paper that it's too early to say. So what will become of those facilities is unclear at the moment.

Last year, GNP announced that it was working towards gradually eliminating the use of antibiotics so that by 2019, all products will be labeled "No Antibiotics—Ever.”

Similarly, Pilgrim's Pride announced last year that it has a goal of eliminating antibiotics from a quarter of its chicken in the same time frame. So it looks like getting rid of antibiotics is still in the works.

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