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Cargill announces acquisition of Pro-Pet

BY Gisselle Gaitan

Cargill, a national supplier of animal feed in the agricultural retail space has announced an agreement to acquire pet food company, Pro-Pet.

Saint Mary’s, Ohio-based Pro-Pet is a private label and co-manufactured pet food brand whose portfolio of products includes the Black Gold label of dog food. This latest acquisition will make Minneapolis-based Cargill the only national supplier of animal feed and pet food offerings, the company said.  

“Pro-Pet’s commitment to high-quality, safe pet food and passion for the pet food business is the perfect fit for our Cargill Animal Nutrition business, and allows us to better serve our customers seeking a focused supplier for both animal feed and pet food options,” Pilar Cruz, president of Cargill Feed and Nutrition said.

The pet food company currently has more than 150 employees and three pet food manufacturing facilities in Owatonna, Minn.; St. Marys, Ohio; and Kansas City, Kan. Being acquired by Cargill will allow the brand to increase production capacity and proximity to existing agricultural retail customers to better meet growth needs within pet food, the company said.

“The pet food category continues to change, as indicated by the increased focus on premium offerings,” Mark Lueking, U.S. managing director of Cargill Feed and Nutrition, said.  “Pro-Pet has the capability to satisfy this market need, and our mutual passion for serving customers make us a strong cultural fit.  We look forward to growing the business together by delivering a range of options to meet customer demand.”

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Siggi’s launches yogurt sweetened only with fruit

BY Gisselle Gaitan

Maker of Icelandic-style yogurt, siggi’s has announced the addition of a new product. The New York City-based company will launch whole-milk no added sugar yogurt later this month. This latest offering will be available in two flavors banana & cinnamon and peach & mango.  

"We have always been at the forefront of reducing sugar in yogurt, and we are constantly pushing ourselves to use even less sugar while still making delicious yogurt with no strange additives," Siggi Hilmarsson, founder of siggi's, said. "We understand that consumers today more than ever want less sugar. For example, in a recent survey we conducted, over 80 percent of participants noted that they are actively trying to reduce their sugar consumption. Our hope in launching this no added sugar line of skyr is to provide everyone with a tasty new yogurt that takes one step further in sugar reduction. We're excited about it and hope our fans are too."

Each flavor contains 10g of protein and 5g of natural sugar per serving and is made without any artificial preservatives, sweeteners, flavors or colors, the company said.

Siggi’s whole-milk no sugar added skyr will be available at retailers nationwide for the suggested retail price of $1.69. 

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Kroger expands Simple Truth

BY Michael Johnsen

Kroger on Wednesday announced the expansion of its Simple Truth brand and launch of its largest-ever Our Brands customer sales promotion, featuring savings on thousands of Simple Truth and Simple Truth Organic items.

"We're proud of the high-quality ingredients that go into our Simple Truth products. We're equally proud of what's not in these foods. Simple Truth products are free from 101-plus artificial preservatives and ingredients," stated Robert Clark, Kroger senior vice president of merchandising. "Instead of GMOs and antibiotics, Simple Truth offers clean labels and fantastic flavors. Kroger has led the way for more than a decade in making natural and organic products more mainstream and accessible. We've always believed that our customers shouldn't have to pay higher prices just because a product is natural or organic. The truth is, we've always been affordable."

Kroger introduced Simple Truth in its fourth quarter 2012, and the brand now offers more than 1,400 unique products across multiple categories, including grocery, meat, produce, deli, bakery, baby, household essentials and personal care. Simple Truth also offers more Fair Trade Certified products than any other private label grocery brand in the country.

With the help of 84.51° insights, Simple Truth will continue to innovate and introduce new affordable items in 2018 that align with customer trends, including increasingly popular categories like beverage, snacking and non-animal proteins. These growing trends have already inspired the Our Brands innovation team to develop exciting new items like Simple Truth Organic sports drinks, Simple Truth Organic sparkling coconut waters, Simple Truth fruit and nut bars and Simple Truth meatless entrees.

In Kroger's third quarter 2017, Our Brands delivered strong performance, making up 28.2% of unit sales and 25.6% of sales dollars, excluding fuel and pharmacy. Simple Truth continued to grow in popularity the same quarter, with sales growing 19%.

"Our Brands is shaping the way we are redefining the grocery customer experience as outlined in our Restock Kroger plan," Clark said.

Simple Truth products are exclusive to the Kroger Family of Stores and customers can purchase the brand in a variety of ways: in a store; through ClickList; or Vitacost.com for ship-to-home delivery.

 

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