ConAgra CEO hopes border tax can bring opportunities, but it is 'too early to tell yet'

ConAgra CEO hopes border tax can bring opportunities, but it is 'too early to tell yet'
ConAgra CEO hopes border tax can bring opportunities, but it is 'too early to tell yet'

show chapters

While some companies in the U.S. have sent a letter to lawmakers in support of the proposed border adjustment tax, other companies say it's too early to predict the consequences of the tax.

Speaking to CNBC in Boca Raton, Florida, on the sidelines of the annual Consumer Analyst Group of New York Conference, ConAgra CEO Sean Connolly said he's hoping there'll be opportunities for growth with the tax in place, but it's "too early" to know the impact of the border tax.

"No one knows exactly how that will play out, but certainly our view is that the best thing that can happen in this country is to get back to growth," Connolly told CNBC's "Squawk Alley." "It impacts everyone differently. But we will try to sit and watch how it unfolds. Certainly we hope there are some opportunities here, but it is too early to tell yet, we'll see."

To spur growth, Connolly said ConAgra is focused on innovation and remarketing beloved longtime food favorites like Slim Jims, Reddi Whip and Peter Pan to millennials.

"To really restart a company the way we have done, you have to rebuild the innovation pipeline from scratch. This is our first wave and it will just compound from here," Connolly said. "The more we can invest in innovation, upgrading our brands and delighting consumers, the better growth and environment we see, and the happier our investors, employees and customers will be."

And even though Connolly is uncertain about what the border tax will bring, he remains optimistic about the economic policies so far.

"We have to watch and adapt as we see things unfold," Connolly said. "But overall I'm optimistic. We have this business and country going the way we want it to."

Connolly wouldn't comment directly on executive orders impacting immigration, but reiterated ConAgra's intention to support its employees.

"You know, we have, being a U.S. food company, we have 13,000 employees, the vast majority of them are here, and they're excited about what we're doing as a company," Connolly said. "We can't be successful without our employees and we will give them every bit of support that we can. They drive value for our shareholders and we're proud to have them on the team."

CNBC

Get the latest news delivered to your inbox

Follow us on social media networks