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Burnette Foods sells maraschino cherry business to N.Y. food processor

BY MiBiz Staff Monday, February 05, 2018 10:14am

ELK RAPIDS — A Northern Michigan private-label food processor has sold a business line to Seneca Foods Corp.

According to a statement, the deal for the maraschino cherry business at Elk Rapids-based Burnette Foods Inc. allows Marion, N.Y.-based Seneca (Nasdaq: SENEA, SENEB) to bolster its current operations, while Burnette turns its focus to its core business.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

“Maraschinos are a small part of our total sales and this transaction will enhance our ability to concentrate on our core business lines of shelf stable fruit fillings, apple products, vegetables and juices,” Burnette CEO William Sherman said in a statement, praising Seneca as a “high quality food producer.”

“We will continue to explore new products for our existing red tart and dark sweet cherry offerings,” Sherman stated.  

The family-owned Burnette is a producer of shelf stable fruit and vegetable products with four plants in Western Michigan, including in New Era and Hartford. The company began as a cherry farm in East Jordan.

Through the first nine months of its 2018 fiscal year, Seneca, provider of packaged fruits and vegetables, generated nearly $1.05 billion in net sales, up from more than $979.5 million in the same period a year ago.

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