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March 13, 2014

Cereal Food Processors of Mission Woods agrees to be purchased

Milner Milling and Pendleton Flour Mills are buying the nation’s largest independent flour-milling company in a transaction that would create the third-largest flour-milling operation in the nation. Terms were not disclosed.

Mission Woods-based Cereal Food Processors Inc., the nation’s largest independent flour-milling company, has agreed to be acquired by a Tennessee-based milling group.

Milner Milling and Pendleton Flour Mills are buying Cereal Food Processors in a transaction that would create the third-largest flour-milling operation in the nation. Terms were not disclosed.

Cereal Food operates plants in Kansas City, Kan., Wichita and McPherson, Kan., as well as in five other states. It makes flour for restaurants and hotels, high-gluten and whole wheat flour, as well as flour for cookies, cakes and tortillas.

Fred L. Merrill founded the company in 1972 by acquiring a mill in Cleveland and added Wichita Flour Mills Inc. a year later.

Cereal Food gained two mills in Utah and two in Montana through a 1984 deal with ConAgra, which had agreed to divest them to win government approval of its own merger deal.

Cereal Food’s acquirers expect to complete the purchase this spring, pending regulatory clearances.

The sale will combine the company with the two others and under one name. The name for the combined operations has not been decided. Milner operates in the Southeast and Pendleton in the Pacific Northwest and Hawaii.

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