Cargill’s chocolate business is expanding: today the agricultural and food processing giant announced that it has solidified an agreement to buy out Archer Daniels Midland (ADM) Company’s own global chocolate business, in a move that will greatly expand Cargill’s chocolate processing reach throughout North America and Europe.
According to its official statement, Cargill has offered up $440 million for ADM’s chocolate business. The acquisition puts Cargill in possession of ADM’s Ambrosia®, Merckens® and Schokinag® private label confectionery and chocolate brands, in addition to 700 employees across six ADM chocolate plants throughout North America and Europe in the following locations:
Cargill states that this merger will help it increase productivity and extend its reach in North America and Europe as well as Asia and Brazil. Cargill also states that it hopes to take ADM’s brands to the next level through its experience and expertise with components like sweeteners, texturizers, and other food processing applications.
“Cocoa and chocolate products have been key contributors to Cargill’s business since 1979,” said Jos de Loor, president Cargill Cocoa & Chocolate EMEA and Asia, in the statement. “We continue to invest strongly in the development of our own facilities and people, and we welcome the opportunity to embrace these new operations and further build on our success together.”
“This acquisition is a major milestone in Cargill’s chocolate growth strategy and will help us better serve our customers in North America and Europe,” added Bryan Wurscher, president Cargill Cocoa and Chocolate North America. “It will bring together great people with a deep passion and commitment to producing excellent chocolate. Our customers will benefit from a broader product portfolio, greater access to innovation and product development support.”
As always, the merger is subject to regulatory approval in both North America and Europe where the transaction will have the most impact. If all goes to plan, the deal should be finalized within the first half of 2015.