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SYSCO AND RITTER FOOD CORPORATION CONFIRM INTENT TO MERGE

 Ritter Addition Will Solidify SYSCO's Distribution Service
 In Strategic Northeast Corridor
 HOUSTON, May 18 /PRNewswire/ -- Bill M. Lindig, president and chief operating officer of SYSCO Corporation (NYSE: SYY), and Martin L. Ritter, president and chief executive officer of Ritter Food Corporation, Elizabeth, N.J., announced today that they have signed a letter of intent to merge the two companies. Mr. Ritter will continue as president and chief executive officer of Ritter, which will become a subsidiary of SYSCO. The proposed merger is expected to be concluded within 45 days.
 Ritter Food Corporation markets and distributes a broad line of foodservice products primarily to customers in New Jersey, metropolitan New York and western Connecticut. The customer base of approximately 4,000 includes many upscale white tablecloth restaurants in Manhattan and the surrounding market areas, as well as healthcare and educational institutions and lodging establishments. The company serves customers from a 275,000-square-foot warehouse distribution facility and achieves approximately $160 million in annual sales volume.
 In discussing the proposed merger, Mr. Lindig said, "Ritter is considered the preeminent independent foodservice distributor in the populous northeastern United States. This represents an opportunity for SYSCO to fill a geographic void in the metropolitan New York area and strengthen our service capabilities throughout this strategic market."
 According to Mr. Ritter, "We are pleased to become part of the SYSCO family. By taking advantage of SYSCO's substantial resources and utilizing the wealth of knowledge we can offer each other, we should be able to continue to grow our business for many years to come."
 SYSCO, listed on the New York Stock Exchange, is the nation's largest foodservice marketing and distribution organization. The company provides its products and services to approximately 230,000 customers located across the United States and western Canada. The SYSCO distribution network currently covers virtually the entire continental United States, including all of its 150 largest cities.
 -0- 5/18/93
 /CONTACT: Bill M. Lindig, president and chief operating officer of SYSCO, 713-584-1390/
 (SYY)


CO: SYSCO Corporation; Ritter Food Corporation ST: Texas, New Jersey IN: SU: TNM

DH -- DE008 -- 9668 05/18/93 10:18 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:May 18, 1993
Words:353
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