The Applegate brand of meat and poultry products continues to grow, giving Hormel Foods an increasing presence in that space, said Jim Snee, Hormel’s president, chairman and CEO.

Snee delivered remarks about Applegate’s recent performance during an earnings call in which Hormel announced the financial results of the first quarter of fiscal year 2022.

“Applegate delivered another outstanding quarter, with growth across the portfolio for products such as breaded chicken, breakfast sausage and sliced meats. Applegate has given us a clear, competitive advantage in the natural and organic meats space, and has provided a platform for some of our most important environmental work, such as regenerative agriculture,” Snee said.

The Applegate business is part of Hormel’s Refrigerated Foods unit, which saw its net sales increase 19% and its profits increase 15%, both on a year-over year basis. Volume for the segment, however, decreased 4%.

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Hormel Foods acquired the Applegate business, known at the time as Applegate Farms LLC, in 2015 for a price of $775 million. When the acquisition was finalized, Hormel said it would operate as a standalone subsidiary within the Refrigerated Foods unit.

During an earlier earnings call, held in August 2020, Snee also discussed Applegate’s growth, even describing that growth as “staggering.”

“Consumers are discovering the Applegate brand at a rapid rate as families are looking for options to feed their kids while at home during the pandemic,” Snee said at the time.

“The growth we have seen from Applegate in the last few months is staggering and we are investing in the business in order to maintain momentum. The Applegate team delivered these impressive results even as they battled disruptions in their third-party logistics system due to COVID-19, and I’ve had to work creatively to find additional capacity in their supply chain.”