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    United Natural Foods to Acquire Natural Food Distributor

    DAYVILLE, Conn. - United Natural Foods Inc., the leading U.S. national distributor of natural and organic foods, today announced it has signed a letter of intent to acquire Blooming Prairie Cooperative, the largest volume distributor of natural foods in the Midwest region.

    DAYVILLE, Conn. - United Natural Foods Inc., the leading U.S. national distributor of natural and organic foods, today announced it has signed a letter of intent to acquire Blooming Prairie Cooperative, the largest volume distributor of natural foods in the Midwest region.

    Blooming Prairie, headquartered in Iowa City, Iowa, and in business since 1974, had approximately $130 million in sales for the latest 12 months. Terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.

    "One of our stated goals has been to further broaden our presence and increase customer penetration in the fast-growing Midwest market," said Michael Funk, United Natural Foods CEO. "Acquiring Blooming Prairie's Iowa City and Minneapolis facilities will provide us with an immediate physical base as well as the growth platform to meet that goal and the volume to expand cost-effectively."

    United Natural Foods said it expects the transaction to close in its first or second fiscal quarter.

    Blooming Prairie Cooperative carries and distributes approximately 15,000 products to more than 2,700 customers primarily in the Midwest. Blooming Prairie serves a wide variety of retail formats including conventional supermarket chains, natural product superstores, independent retail operators, cooperatives and buying clubs.

    United Natural Foods carries and distributes over 30,000 products to more than 7,000 customers nationwide. The company also serves a wide variety of retail formats including conventional supermarket chains, natural product superstores and independent retail operators.

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