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    T&A's Salad Time to Merge With Ready Pac

    IRWINDALE, Calif. - In a deal that combines the United States' third- and fourth-largest fresh-cut salad companies, Ready Pac Produce, Inc. and Tanimura & Antle announced they have signed a letter of intent to merge Tanimura & Antle's Salad Time value-added business with Ready Pac.

    IRWINDALE, Calif. - In a deal that combines the United States' third- and fourth-largest fresh-cut salad companies, Ready Pac Produce, Inc. and Tanimura & Antle announced they have signed a letter of intent to merge Tanimura & Antle's Salad Time value-added business with Ready Pac.

    The senior officers of the company will be Dennis Gertmenian, chairman; Larry Kern, president and c.e.o.; and Craig Delaney, e.v.p. and c.f.o. T&A's Rick Antle will also join Ready Pac's board of directors.

    In the deal Salad Time's fresh-cut salad and vegetable business covering the retail and foodservice sectors in the United States and Canada would merge with Ready Pac's operations, inclusive of Salad Time's four company-owned processing facilities located in Salinas; Montreal; Jackson, Ga.; and Plymouth, Ind.

    Tanimura & Antle's fresh produce commodity business would continue to operate as a separate company under current Tanimura & Antle management.

    "This partnership brings together the strong customer- and consumer-oriented businesses of two great companies," said Dennis Gertmenian, chairman and founder of Ready Pac. "The strong value-added business that Salad Time has built, along with the locations of their processing facilities, are an excellent complement to Ready Pac's current portfolio of products and facilities. This will allow us to better serve the needs of existing and new customers throughout North America and provide new opportunities for our valued associates."

    The deal is subject to final approval by regulatory agencies and the boards of both companies, and is expected to close by the end of the third quarter of 2004.

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