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Canada Bread Closes Deal with Multi-Marques

Toronto, ON – Canada Bread Company, Limited
(TSE: CBY), 68% owned by Maple Leaf Foods Inc. (TSE: MFI) announced today that
Canada Bread has closed the transaction to increase its 25% ownership in
Multi-Marques to 100% by purchasing the remaining shares.

Originally announced on January 22, 2001, the
transaction was subject to review under the Competition Act. The review was
recently satisfactorily completed. Canada Bread has agreed to sell a portion of
its foodservice business in Atlantic Canada within twelve months. While this
fully addresses the competitive issue in this particular market, it will not
have a material financial impact on the overall sales or financial performance
of the combined business.

Multi-Marques has annual sales of over $300 million.
Operations include 11 baking facilities throughout Quebec, and a bakery in
North Bay, Ontario. Multi-Marques also owns 60% of Ben’s Bakery which operates
in Atlantic Canada with baking facilities in Halifax, Nova Scotia and Moncton
and Grand Falls, New Brunswick.

“Canada Bread is now a truly national baker with
operations in every province,” said Richard Lan, Chairman of Canada Bread
Company, Limited and President, Maple Leaf Bakery Group. “This strengthens the
Maple Leaf position as we strive to be a North American leader in bakery
products.”

“Together, both companies will be stronger than either
on its own,” said Michelle Samson-Doel, Chairman of Multi-Marques.

“We’re pleased that the union between Canada Bread and
Multi-Marques has been finalized,” said Roger Dickhout, Chief Executive Officer
of Canada Bread. “Bringing these two companies together furthers our goal of
creating a leading national baker that can service the needs of our customers
across the country.”

Canada Bread Company, Limited is a leading Canadian
manufacturer of value-added flour-based products. Canada Bread maintains a
national presence in the marketplace with three principal brand names: Dempster’s™,
Olivieri™, and Tenderflake™. Canada Bread Company, Limited is 68%
owned by Maple Leaf Foods Inc.

Maple Leaf Foods Inc. (TSE: MFI) is a leading
Canadian-based food processing company committed to delivering quality food
products to consumers in Canada and around the world. Headquartered in Toronto,
Canada, the company employs more than 13,000 people at its operations across
Canada and in the United States, Europe and Asia. Maple Leaf Foods reported
sales of $3.9 billion in 2000.