C.J. Foods to acquire American Nutrition

Submitted by Kristy Finch

C.J. Foods, Inc. (CJF), a custom manufacturer of specialty dry pet food for leading U.S. super premium brands, recently announced an agreement to acquire American Nutrition, Inc. (ANI), a leading supplier of super premium dry, canned and baked pet food and treats products.

This transaction creates the largest independent manufacturer of super premium pet food in the country, producing a total of one billion pounds of pet food annually. The transaction is expected to close by April.

The acquisition of ANI will enable CJF to offer a full portfolio of pet food and treats with national and international distribution. David McLain, CEO of C.J. Foods, will join the Board of Directors, Tod Morgan remains Chairman of the Board and Bill Behnken, current President and CEO of ANI, will serve as a Board member.

“This acquisition creates the leading manufacturer of super premium pet food with a national footprint, focused on producing and delivering the highest quality products to our customers,” Morgan said.

C.J. Foods has a rich 35-year history in super premium pet food manufacturing with a wide range of international capabilities serving the leading super premium brand owners and retailers.

ANI is one of the nation’s largest manufacturers of super-premium quality dry, canned and baked pet food and treat products. Operating five manufacturing facilities throughout the United States, ANI has achieved a reputation of manufacturing excellence through its emphasis on quality and best-in-class SQF certified production facilities.

“C.J. Foods and ANI are two world-class manufacturers with complementary capabilities that make the combination a win for our customers,” Behnken said. “It truly enhances our ability to provide higher levels of innovation to meet the ever-evolving opportunities in premium pet nutrition.”

“CJF is thrilled to be moving forward with ANI to strengthen our customer value proposition with a continued singular focus on innovation and food safety, leading the industry with on-trend products,” McLain said.

C.J. Foods is a portfolio company of J.H. Whitney Capital Partners (JH Whitney), a Connecticut based private equity firm that has owned C.J. Foods since 2014, and acquired Lortscher Animal Nutrition (LANI) in 2018.

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