PATTERSON -- Two local food companies have teamed up to buy part of the shuttered Patterson Vegetable Co. plant so they can expand their operations.
Sierra Pacific Refrigerated Services and Traina Foods formed Traina Pacific to buy a 100,000-square-foot refrigerated warehouse, other warehouses and the repackaging area, said Sierra Pacific Chief Executive Officer Chris Murphy.
Murphy said Sierra Pacific and Traina Foods will continue as separate businesses and operate independently.
"We are each going to expand our existing businesses into this new space we purchased," Murphy said Friday. He said the purchase became final about 10 days ago. He declined to reveal the sales price.
Patterson Vegetable Co., which was founded in 1946 as Patterson Frozen Foods, closed in June after union workers rejected cuts in wages and benefits to pay for plant upgrades, according to company CEO Eric Schwartz.
About 350 workers lost their jobs in the closure.
Traina Pacific bought part of the facility from San Francisco-based Rabin Worldwide, which now owns the shuttered plant.
Rabin Worldwide, which appraises and auctions equipment, is auctioning Patterson Vegetable Co. on Jan. 22 to 24. It is selling everything, from the spinach truck unloading station and zucchini quartering machines to forklifts and office furniture, according to its Web site.
Sierra Pacific has facilities in Patterson, Turlock, Stockton and Modesto and provides refrigerated warehousing services to national food service companies, such as Sysco.
Sierra Pacific has a 140,000-square-foot warehouse next to Patterson Vegetable Co., but Murphy said his company has outgrown the site. The company employs about two dozen workers in Patterson. Murphy said it's too soon to say if the company will hire more.
"We believe Patterson is a good logistical location in California," he said.
Patterson-based Traina Foods grows, sun-dries and packages fruit and vegetable products, including sun-dried tomatoes, according to its Web site. The business was started in 1926 and serves industrial food ingredient and food service companies.
CEO Willie Traina could not be reached for comment Friday.
Bee staff writer Kevin Valine can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (209) 578-2316.