With annual sales of $933 million in 2003, Performance Food Group's fresh-cut division is considered the largest produce processor in the United States. The PFG's Fresh Express brand is the market share leader in the packaged salad category at retail, the company said. The division purchases, processes, packages and distributes a variety of ready-to-eat salads and other fresh-cut produce offerings to food retailers, foodservice distributors, operators and quick-service restaurants nationwide.
Bob Sledd, chairman and ceo, commented, "Since our company's inception, we have committed significant effort toward building our fresh-cut business to its current leadership position in the industry. As we assess the future of Performance Food Group and consider the changing balance in our business between foodservice distribution and fresh produce processing, we believe that it is the appropriate time to evaluate strategic alternatives to continue the growth of the fresh-cut segment while considering the best interests of our shareholders, customers and our associates."
PFG said it has made no predetermination as to any particular strategic alternative. The alternatives to be evaluated include, but are not limited to, the possible sale of the division as an ongoing business; the creation of a stand-alone company operating the fresh-cut business; or keeping the fresh-cut division as part of the company. The company expects that it will broadly disseminate an update to this process when it reaches a conclusion.