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Bolthouse acquisition bolsters presence, plans for innovation

bolthouseBuilding on its 100-plus years of carrot-farming heritage, Bolthouse Farms has entered into an agreement to acquire Arizona-based Rousseau Farming Co.'s carrot operations. The company said this move is part of its long-term growth plans.

"This acquisition will help us scale to serve our customers better by bringing more fresh and healthy, locally grown carrots to them in the Southwest," said Bolthouse Farms CEO Jeff Dunn. "We've had a longstanding relationship with the Rousseau family and are committed to partnering with companies that share our core values of sustainability, product quality and customer service. We look forward to continuing to grow our businesses and support the industry together."

From a strategic standpoint, the acquisition will allow Bolthouse Farms to focus on providing customers more locally grown carrots as part of their regional strategy and "four corners" growing approach — Washington, Georgia, eastern Canada and now Arizona, in addition to California. It will also bolster Bolthouse Farms' plans for innovation in the carrot space. While the wompany is already equipped when it comes to automation, processing and packing advancements, it plans to refine the product, introduce new varieties and optimize the growth cycle and supply chain.

Bolthouse Farms and Rousseau Farming Co. both share rich histories in farming. The Bolthouse family started carrot farming in 1915 in Grant, MI, and by 1950 established itself as a leading supplier in the Midwest— today, Bolthouse Farms is one of the top carrot producers in the U.S. with a reputation for flavor and quality. Similarly, the Rousseau family has been putting fresh produce on tables since 1892 and remains committed to providing consumers with locally grown produce more than 120 years later.

Will Rousseau, owner of Rousseau Farming Co., and a fourth-generation Salt River Valley farmer, said, "My family has focused on providing fresh produce for the American table for more than 125 years, and I believe partnerships like this are what will help us continue to evolve and certainly see us through another 100 years."

Rousseau Farming Co.'s name for carrot operations is not expected to change as a result of the acquisition. Additionally, Rousseau Farming Co. will retain ownership of all other produce operations.

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