Kraft Heinz, Simplot sign manufacturing deal for Ore-Ida potato-based brand
The Kraft Heinz Company has signed a long-term agreement with Simplot Food Group, a unit of the J.R. Simplot Company, under which the latter will be the exclusive manufacturer and supplier of the Ore-Ida potato-based frozen foods brand.
The ownership of the Ore-Ida brand will continue with Kraft Heinz.
J.R. Simplot Company with its expertise in potato manufacturing and distribution is hoped to help expand the Ore-Ida brand by introducing innovation and technology to the business. Besides, J.R. Simplot Company will create increased efficiencies with vertical integration, which includes the supply of potatoes for the Ore-Ida brand beginning with the 2023/24 crop season.
Mark McKellar — president of Simplot Food Group said: “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.
“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.”
Under the terms of the agreement, Kraft Heinz will be transferring ownership of its potato manufacturing facility in Ontario, Oregon, to J.R. Simplot Company. The latter has committed to make capital investments as required to meet increased demand.
The handover of the Ontario potato manufacturing facility is expected in Q2 2022. Presently, the facility has a workforce of around 600 people.
Renee Peets — Kraft Heinz North America Procurement senior vice president said: “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.
“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.”