Cargill dog food
MINNEAPOLIS, MINNESOTA, U.S. – Cargill has reached an agreement to acquire Pro-Pet, an Ohio, U.S.-based manufacturer of private label and co-manufactured pet foods, including premium dog food brand Black Gold.  

Cargill said the acquisition makes it the only national supplier of both animal feed and pet food offerings in the agricultural retail space.

The transaction is expected to close within 30 days, subject to customary approvals. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

“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,” said Pilar Cruz, president of Cargill Feed and Nutrition.

Pro-Pet has more than 150 employees and three pet food manufacturing facilities in Owatonna, Minnesota; St. Marys, Ohio; and Kansas City, Kansas. Pro-Pet provides Cargill with increased production capacity and proximity to existing agricultural retail customers to better meet their growth needs within pet food.

“Cargill’s vast resources and competency in sourcing of commodities, along with their reputation in the agricultural retail business sector, makes Cargill the natural and best partner for Pro-Pet,” said Jim Wiegmann, president and chief executive officer of Pro-Pet. “There is no organization that can leverage the strengths and capabilities of Pro-Pet better than Cargill, which will enhance our ability to serve retail partners and pet food brand owners.”

Cargill said pet food is a fast-growing category among agriculture retailers with an estimated 8% distribution share, in a space that continues to evolve with changing consumer preferences.

“The pet food category continues to change, as indicated by the increased focus on premium offerings,” said Mark Lueking, U.S. managing director for Cargill Feed and Nutrition. “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.”

This is Cargill’s most recent addition or expansion into animal nutrition. Cargill recently announced its investment of $15 million at its existing premix and nutrition facility in Tianjin, China, to add a piglet feed production line.

On Dec. 7, the company opened a new $12 million facility in the Philippines that will manufacture premix feed solutions under the Provimi brand. The facility is located at the First Bulacan Industrial Park in Malolos, Bulacan, Philippines, and employs 50 people.

In October, Cargill reached an agreement to acquire Integral Animal Nutrition, a cattle feed producer in Brazil. The announcement came just a few days after Cargill signed an agreement to acquire Diamond V, a Cedar Rapids, Iowa, U.S.-based company focused on improving animal health.

Currently, Cargill operates 50 animal feed production and distribution facilities across the United States, offering branded and private label pet food to agriculture retailer customers.