Hershey to acquire two popcorn manufacturing plants

Paula Wolf//April 18, 2023


Hershey to acquire two popcorn manufacturing plants

Paula Wolf//April 18, 2023

The Hershey Co. has agreed to buy two manufacturing plants from Weaver Popcorn Manufacturing, a co-manufacturer of Hershey’s SkinnyPop brand, in Bethlehem and in Whitestown, Indiana.

Cost was undisclosed. The acquisition is subject to customary regulatory approvals and will be financed with cash on hand and short-term borrowings, a release said.

The deal is designed to enable the global confectioner and salty snacks company to sustain strong growth for SkinnyPop by strengthening internal supply chain capabilities in combination with its network of suppliers and co-manufacturers.

“Hershey has experienced tremendous growth over the past few years, stemming from a combination of successful strategy execution and an increase in more snacking occasions among consumers,” said Kristen Riggs, Hershey’s president of salty snacks. “In fact, SkinnyPop has been No. 1 in retail sales growth for ready-to-eat popcorn over the last three years.”

Jason Reiman, Hershey’s chief supply chain officer, added: “In response to consumer snacking trends, we continue to evolve our supply chain, making significant investments in the size, scale and capabilities of our network, improving resiliency while we continue to strengthen existing supplier relationships. Our acquisition of Weaver’s two facilities is a perfect example of how we’re investing to bring added capacity and strength across our portfolio of brands well into the future.”

A family-owned and operated company for over 90 years, Weaver operates three independent entities, including Weaver Popcorn Manufacturing.

According to its website, Weaver Popcorn Manufacturing “is a recognized leader in the production and co-packing of popping corn, microwave popcorn and ready-to-eat popcorn,” and operates the world’s largest microwave popcorn manufacturing facility.

Weaver Popcorn CEO Jason Kashman said, “Hershey is acquiring two best-in-class popcorn manufacturing operations that will enable continued growth in volume and quality, with teams at each location that have an unrivaled expertise.”

Paula Wolf is a freelance writer