Bumble Bee Foods
|Headquarters||San Diego, California, USA|
Bumble Bee Foods, LLC is a former American company that produces canned tuna, salmon, other seafoods, and chicken. The company is headquartered in San Diego, California, United States. The brand is marketed as Clover Leaf in Canada. It is now owned by the British private equity firm Lion Capital.
The Bumble Bee company began in 1899 when seven salmon canners in Astoria, Oregon formed the Columbia River Packers Association. The Bumble Bee brand was introduced in 1910. Columbia River Packers merged with Dole into Castle & Cooke.
Since the middle 1980s, Bumble Bee Foods has gone through a number of ownership changes, beginning with Castle & Cooke's sale of Bumble Bee in a leveraged buyout to management in 1985. The management team, having paid off their leveraged debt prior to their 5-year goal, sold Bumble Bee to Pillsbury in 1988 contingent upon the President, Patrick Rose and the management team staying on for 5 years, Pillsbury in turn, following their December 1988, hostile takeover by Grand Metropolitan PLC, were forced to sell it the next year to the Thai company Unicord. Bumble Bee went bankrupt in 1997, and was sold to International Home Foods, the former food unit of American Home Products. ConAgra acquired International Home Foods in 2000; they sold Bumble Bee to the private equity firm Centre Partners in 2003. The Canadian company Connors Bros. merged with Bumble Bee in 2004. Centre Partners acquired the company again in 2008 and sold it to Lion Capital in 2010.
The company formerly ran a cannery in Astoria, Oregon, the Samuel Elmore Cannery, which had been designated a National Historic Landmark. The deteriorating structure was later slated for demolition, and the facility burned in 1993. Today the company has canneries in Mayagüez, Puerto Rico and Santa Fe Springs, California.
In 1982, 40 million cans of Bumble Bee tuna were recalled due to holes in some cans. In 2007, a case of botulism caused by food produced at a plant owned and operated by Bumble Bee prompted a recall (see Castleberry's Food Company). In 2010, the USDA announced a recall of Bumble Bee chicken salad products because of plastic pieces found inside.
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- Dave Thompson (2000). Alternative Rock. Hal Leonard Corp. p. 113. ISBN 0-87930-607-6.