Jennie-O Turkey Store is gobbling up profits in the turkey-processing marketplace. A Hormel subsidiary since 1986, Jennie-O processes more than 1 billion pounds of turkey annually for the production of fresh, frozen, refrigerated, and deli products. Answering the convenience-food call, it also offers heat-and-serve turkey entrees under the SO EASY brand name. Jennie-O also offers a full line of foodservice products. The company's more than 1,500 different turkey products are available throughout the US, as well as in other countries. It accounted for 18% of its parent's 2009 sales. The company was formed in 2001 as a result of the merger of Jennie-O Foods and The Turkey Store Company.
Despite its high-profile tie up with the popular TV show The Biggest Loser, whose contestants tout the benefits of Jennie-O's lean protein turkey products in commercials, sales fell more than 3% in fiscal 2009 (ends October) vs. the year earlier period. The company blamed the decline on lower commodity turkey sales and lower pricing. Sales of Jennie-O's value-added products also fell in the second half of fiscal 2009, reflecting the weak economy. Profits rose 11% in fiscal 2009 however, due primarily to lower feed costs. – less