TORONTO — The board of directors of Canada Bread Co. Ltd. on Oct. 21 said it had established a special committee in response to Maple Leaf Foods, on the same day, saying it was exploring strategic alternatives for Maple Leaf’s bakery business, including a potential sale of the company’s 90% ownership in Canada Bread Co. Canada Bread Co.’s special committee is comprised solely of independent directors.

“The special committee has been established to seek to ensure that all Canada Bread shareholders are treated fairly and that the company’s interests are taken into account during any such process that may affect Canada Bread,” Canada Bread said.

The special committee has engaged CIBC World Markets Inc. as its financial adviser and also has engaged independent legal counsel. The special committee has the authority to retain other advisers as it considers appropriate.

Shares of Canada Bread on the Toronto Stock Exchange opened at C$64.01 per share on Oct. 21 and closed the day at C$66.17 per share. Canada Bread Co. manufactures and markets flour-based products, including fresh bread, rolls, bagels, sweet goods, frozen partially baked or par-baked bread and bagels, and specialty pasta and sauces. The company in the fiscal year ended Dec. 31, 2012, had sales of C$1,567 million and net earnings of C$71 million, or C$2.81 per share.