your-news image
Glory Foods Inc., a Columbus, OH-based privately held company that produces Southern-style products including canned vegetables, frozen entrées and fresh-cut bagged vegetables, has been purchased by McCall Farms Inc. in Effingham, SC. The purchase, for an undisclosed price, was finalized in December but was announced publicly May 3. McCall Farms had served as Glory Foods' contract packager for its first 10 years in business.

Glory Foods had handled canned and frozen lines since its founding in 1989, but its fresh line debuted in late 2001. The company had augmented its product line with value-added packaged greens, and found phenomenal sales growth, fueled largely by African-American consumers. The company’s fresh greens accounted for nearly one-quarter of its overall sales.

Bill Williams co-founded Glory Foods with Garth Henley, Dan Charna and Iris Cooper in 1989. Mr. Williams operated the firm until he died in 2001. According to Business First of Columbus, a business journal based in Columbis the company’s sales rose 37 percent to $70 million between 2004 and 2007. It was one of central Ohio’s larger minority-owned businesses.

Jacqueline Neal, president of Glory Foods, told Business First of Columbus that "consumers won’t notice a difference" regarding the sale. She added that cuts in consumer spending had hurt the business in the recession.

According to the Glory Foods web site, its fresh, ready-to-use produce line consists of mixed, collard, kale, mustard and turnip greens, cut cabbage, cut sweet potatoes, turnip roots, yellow squash and yellow squash and zucchini mix. The company promoted its fresh category by touting the convenient-to- use line of bagged vegetables as flavorful and healthy, and offering quick, nutritious meal solutions, versatility and a trusted brand name.

McCall Farms’ product line consists of canned, frozen and processed items. It is not known if the fresh produce line will continue to be produced under the purchase agreement.

On March 17, the South Carolina Department of Development and the Florence County Economic Development Partnership announced that McCall Farms would expand its operations in Florence County with a $9 million investment that is expected to generate 65 new jobs.

McCall Farms has been growing food for more than 170 years. The company farms and cans tomatoes, okra, corn, squash, beans, peas, peaches, peanuts and greens. Its products are sold throughout the Southeast. The produce is grown on McCall’s 2,000-acre South Carolina farm, and it contracts with farmers in Florida, Georgia and the Carolinas for another 3,000 acres. The company manufactures about 40 different products under the “Margaret Holmes” and “Miss Millie” brands. It also private-labels and packs for the foodservice sector.

McCall Farms referred inquiries to Glory Foods. Neither Ms. Neal nor Mr. Charna responded to requests for comment.