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 BRADENTON, Fla., Jan. 10 /PRNewswire/ -- Tropicana Products, Inc. has today announced the execution of definitive agreements providing for the acquisition of Hitchcock, Germany's leading premium fruit juice brand, from Deinhard & Company KGaA. The terms of the agreement were not disclosed.
 Myron A. Roeder, president, Tropicana Products, Inc., based in Bradenton, Fla., commenting on this important move into the German juice market, said:
 "The Hitchcock brand is a perfect match for our own portfolio of premium juices. Tropicana and Hitchcock are both top quality juice brands, which offer an authentic and fresh tasting juice direct from the fruit, and are not made from a concentrated base. We are delighted to be able to add the Hitchcock brand to our own line of juices."
 Unlike most other juice available in Germany which are made from concentrate with added water, Hitchcock juices are squeezed direct from the fruit. In a not from concentrate product such as Hitchcock, the juice is carefully extracted from the fruit and pasteurized prior to vacuum-packaging. No water, sugar, preservatives or additives are added at any stage and the result is a juice that tastes as close as possible to freshly squeezed with the added convenience of a longer shelf life.
 Roeder continued, "Hitchcock is the leading brand of premium fruit juice in Germany and is highly respected throughout the trade. Deinhard has done an excellent job expanding distribution throughout Germany. Due to their successful sales and distribution business, Deinhard will continue to distribute the brand for us in Germany." Yves Dumont, managing director of Tropicana Europe, added:
 "By acquiring the leading brand of ambient, not form concentrate juice in Germany and combining this business with our own growing sales of Tropicana Pure Premium, across Europe, we are taking a major step towards building a significant and profitable business focused on top quality fruit-based drinks. Our commitment to growing in the market through premium products will benefit both the trade and consumer.
 "Juice and nectar consumption in Germany is now almost 40 liters per head. Indeed, Germans enjoy more juice than any other nation in the world on a per capita consumption basis. What is surprising, however, is that within this buoyant market, more than 97% of the juice products offered are made from concentrate. We believe that, by combining Hitchcock's strength in the local market place with Tropicana's own expertise in the juice industry, we can improve this choice, developing the sector of juices that are direct from fruit and are not made from concentrate. In our opinion, it is the quality and taste of these premium juices that will forge the way into the future."
 The current Hitchcock range includes three pure squeezed, not from concentrate ambient citrus juices: Orange and Grapefruit, retailing in 0.7 liter glass bottles; and Lemon, which is available in 0.5 and 0.2 liter glass bottles. Hitchcock is the clear leader in the premium juice market in Germany, with more than 75% share of sales for premium orange juice.
 Manfred Scherer, Deinhard Executive Vice President for Finance and Administration, stated:
 "Our long term strategic commitment is to focus on our core business in still and sparkling wines. As a logical consequence, we have decided to sell the Hitchcock brand to Tropicana, the world's number one fruit juice company."
 Gunter Friesen, Deinhard Executive Vice President for Marketing and Sales, completed by saying:
 "We are pleased to continue working with Tropicana and the further use our specialized knowledge in the distribution of fruit juices in all trade channels in Germany. We are confident that the fruit juice know- how of Tropicana, together with Deinhard's expertise in sales and distribution, will guarantee a dynamic development of the Hitchcock brand in the future."
 Deinhard, a family-owned business founded in 1794 -- and celebrating its 200th anniversary this year -- is a leading producer and distributor of German sparkling and still wines. The current Group of Deinhard includes the vineyards of Oestrich and Bernkastel, with a significant share of the renowned Bernkasteler Doktorberg, as well as the wine, champagne and spirits import company, DC (Domaines & Chateaux). Deinhard wines are distributed in more than 60 countries worldwide, including the U.S. and Canada. The Hithchcock brand was first licensed to Deinhard in 1968, with full ownership following in 1992.
 Tropicana Products, Inc. produces and markets the leading brand of juice in the world.(A) Tropicana products are sold in North America. Europe, Asia and Latin America. Among the brands of Tropicana Products, Inc. are Pure Premium(R) Original Orange Juice, Pure Premium(R) Grovestand(TM) Orange Juice, Pure Premium(R) Home Style(TM) Orange Juice, Tropicana Twister(R), Tropicana Twister(R) Light, Pure Tropics(R) and other juices and juice beverages. Tropicana is a wholly owned subsidiary of The Seagram Company Ltd. (NYSE: VO)
 The Seagram Company Ltd. is a leading global producer and marketer of distilled spirits, wines, fruit juices, coolers and mixers, and sells its brands in more than 150 countries. Seagram manages its worldwide beverage operation through two major business units, The Seagram Spirits and Wine Group and The Seagram Beverage Group; and two U.S.-based specialized premium wine operations, The Seagram Classics Wine Company and Seagram Chateau & Estate Wines Company. Affiliates and joint ventures in 34 countries comprise the largest distribution system in the spirits and wine industry.
 (A) source: Tropicana market research 1992
 -0- 1/10/94
 /CONTACT: Terri McNorton of Tropicana Products, 813-747-4461/

CO: Tropicana Products, Inc.; Hitchcock; Deinhard & Company KGaA;
 Seagram Company Ltd. ST: Florida IN: FOD SU: TNM

DP-JB -- FL014R -- 0615 01/10/94 13:10 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jan 10, 1994

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