Melfort, Sask. – The province of Saskatchewan is getting out of the meat business by selling its Melfort-based meat processing firm – a firm it has invested in since 1996.
The province says it has been trying to sell Thomson Meats Ltd. since 2008.
The company has been purchased by a corporation led by the current Thomson Meats CEO, Paul Kowdrysh.
“Our role as government is to create a positive economic climate for businesses to succeed, not to be involved in owning private companies,” explains Bob Bjornerud, agriculture minister.
From 1996 to 2007, the previous provincial government invested $11.9 million in Thomson Meats via share purchases, debentures, and grants.
The Government of Saskatchewan never collected a dividend nor was it ever repaid for any of the debentures provided to the company.
And Thomson Meats has not recorded a profit in any year since 1996 when the government first invested in the company.
Bjornerud says he is optimistic that returning this business to private hands will improve its profitability in the future.
The Agricultural Credit Corporation of Saskatchewan owned 100 per cent of the shares in Thomson Meats prior to its sale.
The province received $246,972.05 for the sale and the purchaser has agreed to assume all debt and liabilities of the company.
Thomson Meats produces pre-cut, pre-priced beef, pork and poultry products, such as organic beef burgers, breaded boneless pork rib style and home-style fully cooked beef meat loaf. The new owners intend to keep production in Melfort.