Western’s Smokehouse, headquartered in Greentop, Mo., and a leading manufacturer of premium, crafted meat snacks, has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Thrushwood Farms.

Western’s Smokehouse and Galesburg, Ill.-based Thrushwood Farms provide contract manufacturing and private label services to the leading natural, artisanal, and better-for-you brands in the category. Both facilities are primarily focused on crafted meat snacks, which include snack sticks, strips, bars, and bites. Both facilities have deep experience making product with premium meats, such as 100% grass-fed beef, antibiotic-free turkey, chicken and pork, and human-grade pet treats. 

“Dating back 40 years, both companies have had tremendous mutual respect. The Hankes family is a pillar of the Galesburg community and the meat processing industry,” says Ben Rudman, President of Western’s Smokehouse and Partner at Charis Consumer Partners. “We are obsessed with delighting consumers and helping our private label customers win, and the Thrushwood team will help us do both. On a combined basis, we now have more capacity, capability, and innovation resources to help our customers grow.”

Doug Hankes, Vice President at Thrushwood Farms and new Western’s shareholder added, “Our family has known the Western family for decades and this combination just makes sense. We are thrilled to partner with Western’s and Charis and look forward to using this partnership to help our customers grow.”

Thrushwood Farms will also be closing its retail store on February 22, 2020. Thrushwood Farms will be able to focus on its growing snack stick business and provide opportunities for job growth. All retail store employees have been offered jobs in the growing plant.

“It’ll be a sad day to close the store. So much has gone into it over the years,” says Jim Hankes, founder of Thrushwood Farms. “It’s bittersweet because change is hard, but it’s ultimately the right thing and will allow us to focus on a growing part of our business and create exciting new opportunities for the area.”

The combined companies are backed by Charis Consumer Partners, a small independent group of investors. Charis is comprised of consumer-packaged goods executives and partners with family-owned businesses in the food manufacturing industry.

Source: Western’s Smokehouse