( Limoneira )

Santa Paula, Calif.-based Limoneira Co. has closed on a deal to buy a packinghouse and related assets of Oxnard Lemon Associates Ltd., Oxnard, Calif.

The purchase consists of a packinghouse and related equipment on 13 acres less than a mile from the Port of Hueneme. The operation has a packing capacity of 4 million cartons per year, according to a news release.

The deal will add up to 2.5 million lemon cartons to Limoneira’s volume in fiscal year 2019, according to the release.

The packinghouse includes a line for organic and specialty citrus and will increase Limoneira’s share of packing and marketing third-party grower fruit from California facilities.

“We are very excited about Oxnard Lemon joining the Limoneira family,” Harold Edwards, president and CEO of Limoneira, said in the release. “Oxnard Lemon has built a sterling reputation within the lemon industry and is at the forefront of the organic and specialty citrus movement in California.”

Edwards said that by combining the two facilities under the Limoneira platform, the company will create significant efficiencies that will position Limoneira for long-term growth.

“Our pipeline of potential acquisitions remains robust and we will continue to seek value-enhancing transactions for our shareholders,” he said. 

The newly created Oxnard Division of Limoneira will be included in Limoneira’s consolidated results of operations from the date of final closing beginning Nov. 1, according to the release.

“This exciting milestone will allow growers to leverage Limoneira’s growing global footprint in the fresh citrus industry and maximize their returns,” Amy Fukutomi, principal partner in Oxnard Lemon, said in the release. “We look forward to a bright future together.”