Effective immediately, JBS USA will manage XL Lakeside, a beef processing plant in Brooks, Alberta, Canada, with the capacity to process 4,000 head of cattle per day. XL Lakeside is one of the largest employers in southern Alberta and one of Canada's largest beef processors.


"Today, JBS USA expands its North American operations through an agreement with Canada's XL Foods, one of Canada's largest producers of beef and related products," stated Bill Rupp, President and COO, JBS USA Beef. "As the world's largest producer of animal protein, we know full well the commitment it takes to manage world-class operations that produce safe and nutritious products for consumers around the world to enjoy. We believe our experienced team will prove an invaluable asset in the management of XL Lakeside and we look forward to exploring our options to purchase XL assets in the near future."

As part of the agreement, JBS USA holds an exclusive option to purchase XL properties including: the Lakeside beef packing plant; a beef
packing plant in Calgary, Alberta; a feedlot in Brooks, Alberta, and the adjacent farmland acreage; a beef packing plant in Omaha, Neb.; and a beef packing plant in Nampa, Idaho. Upon exercising the exclusive option to purchase the above assets, JBS USA agrees to pay USD $50 million in cash and USD $50 million in JBS S.A. shares. Under no scenario will JBS USA assume any of XL Foods' debt or liabilities.

The annoucement comes just weeks after the Brooks plant was closed from the discovery that it has processed beef contaminated with E. coli. A recall of XL Foods products involved 33 retail chains in Canada and additional chains in the U.S. XL shipments to the U.S. have been halted by the U.S. government. Click here to see more about the reall of XL beef.

A series of layoffs resulted in 2,200 XL workers being let go, according to the Montreal Gazette, with about 800 recalled back to work for temporary duties to finish processing beef carcasses under assessments by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.


CFIA will review XL controls for E. coli, meat hygience, sampling techniques and overall sanitation, the Gazette reported - then make a recommendation on which steps to take next. end mark

-- From combined reports