Perham-based KLN Enterprises has agreed to sell its Barrel O'Fun snacks business to Shearer's Foods, a northeastern Ohio-based snack maker, for an undisclosed price.
Barrel O'Fun, which began making snacks in 1973, has a large plant in Perham, which is about 180 miles northwest of Minneapolis, as well as operations in Phoenix, Ariz., and Waterford, Penn.
"It was the right partner at the right time," KLN CEO Kenny Nelson said in a press statement. "After 51 years in the manufacturing business, this was a good fit."
The Nelson family will maintain an investment in Barrel O'Fun, which makes potato chips and other salty snacks as well as licorice.
The sale does not include KLN's pet food business.
Kenny Nelson and his father, Darrell, started Tuffy's Pet Foods in 1964 and nine years later they got into the salty snack business. KLN got into candy snacks in 1987, and since then has also started new salty snack brands including Vic's popcorn and Rachel's kettle potato chips.
The Barrel O'Fun plant in Perham employed more than 1,300 people as of August 2014. Local management will remain in place at each Barrel O'Fun location.
"Our ultimate goal is to keep things similar for our employees with regards to wages, benefits and profit-sharing," KLN Vice President Chris Nelson, Kenny's son, said in a statement. "Shearer's has a similar culture and commitment to family and community."
Massillon-Ohio-based Shearer's is family owned and makes salty snacks, cookies and crackers. Like Barrel O'Fun, it also produces contract and private-label branded snacks for other companies.
The deal is subject to regulatory approval and closing is expected by year end.