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Schwan's announces acquisitions as frozen food company beefs up its pizza business

Schwan's Co., headquarted in Marshall, Minn., has acquired three companies in recent months as it builds up its frozen pizza business. The frozen food company launched the Red Baron frozen pizza brand pictured here in the 1970s. Schwan's Co. / Special to The Forum

MARSHALL, Minn.—A frozen food company is boosting its frozen pizza business with two recent acquisitions.

Schwan's Co., which was founded in 1952 and is headquartered in Marshall, announced Monday, July 24, that it acquired Better Baked Foods and Drayton Foods from NE Foods Inc.

It's the second acquisition in recent months as the company builds up its stake in the U.S. pizza market, according to a news release. Schwan's reported last month that it acquired MaMa Rosa's Pizza, a company based in Sidney, Ohio.

"We are focused on adding to our capabilities and growing our share of the U.S. pizza market," CEO Dimitrios Smyrnios said in a written statement about the latest announcement.

Smyrnios said the purchase will allow Schwan's to "deepen our collaborations" with food service and retail customers as it works to innovate and grow its pizza offerings.

Schwan's newest acquisitions include Drayton Foods, which has a production facility in Fargo, 1307 39th St. N., and makes pizza crusts, dough balls, breadsticks and dinner rolls for food industry customers. Drayton Foods also sells its Two Sicily's brand of frozen foods in stores.

Schwan's also bought Better Baked Foods, a company based in North East, Pa., that makes and sells pizza, French bread pizza and sandwich items for private label customers and food service venues. The company also sells several brands in stores, including Better Baked Classics, Daybreak Classics, Papa Presto, Zap-A-Snack and Odyssey.

The acquisition of Better Baked Foods includes Better Baked Foods of Erie, which produces its products in North East, Penn., Erie, Penn., and Westfield, N.Y., according to the news release.

Ryan Johnson

Ryan Johnson has been a Forum reporter since 2012 and previously wrote for the Grand Forks Herald.

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