Kraft Foods to sell Houston coffee plant to Maximus Coffee

by Eric Schroeder
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NORTHFIELD, ILL. — Kraft Foods Inc. announced it has agreed to sell its coffee plant in Houston to Maximus Coffee Group L.P., a division of Cadeco Industries, Inc. Cadeco is an integrated coffee processor featuring technologies in cleaning, sorting, weighing, blending, roasting and decaffeination of coffee.

As part of the agreement, Maximus Coffee Group will produce coffee and powdered beverages for Kraft, as well as its own coffee products. In addition, Maximus will continue the production of Minute Rice at the Houston plant and will produce Minute Rice until Ebro Puleva is ready to transfer rice production to its own facilities, Kraft said.

The sale does not include Kraft brands made at the plant, but does include the buildings, machinery, equipment and inventory at the site.

"Both Kraft and Maximus Coffee Group will benefit from this transaction," said Glen Berrington, vice-president of manufacturing for Kraft’s beverages sector. "With Kraft’s divestiture of Minute Rice, the Houston plant would have been underutilized once rice production fully transitioned to Ebro Puleva. Maximus Coffee Group is well positioned to maintain production of Kraft’s products as a co-manufacturer, and will gain manufacturing capacity in addition to the new business opportunity with Kraft."

The transaction is expected to be completed by the end of this year.

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