Dean Foods Company is one of the largest food and beverage companies in the United States. Its operation is divided into two segments: WhiteWave-Morningstar and Fresh Dairy Direct. The company has its current headquarters in Dallas, Texas.
The history of Dean Foods started more than 80 years ago when founder Samuel Dean bought the Pecatonica Marketing Company in Illinois, which was a processing plant for evaporated milk. Two years later, Dean changed the company’s name to Dean Evaporated Milk Company. It was also in the same period that Dean bought additional dairy plants in Illinois to expand his business.
In 1929, the company’s name was changed again, this time into Dean Milk Company. More than thirty years later, in 1961, Dean Milk made its initial common stock offering of 1,800 shares. Two years later, Dean Milk became Dean Foods Company and established a new headquarters in Franklin Park, Illinois.
In 1981, after acquiring a number of dairy companies all around the country, Dean Foods became listed on NYSE under “DF.” In 2001, Dean Foods Company was acquired by the country’s largest dairy company, Suiza Foods Corp. Suiza then changed its own name to Dean Foods Company and changed its NYSE symbol to DF from the original SZA.
In the succeeding years, Dean Foods was able to acquire White Wave Inc. and Horizon Organic Holding Co., thereby further expanding its business. In 2004, Dean Foods decided to merge Horizon Organic®, Silk® and other brands as WhiteWave Foods Co. and established its headquarters in Broomfield, Colorado.
In 2006, Dean Foods was added to Standard and Poor’s 500 Index. In 2008, the company issued its first report for corporate responsibility. A year after, Dean Foods completed another successful acquisition when it bought European company Alpro.
Currently, Dean Foods has over 50 brands, both local and national, that are sold at retailers all over the United States. Aside from its own brands, the company also produces an array of private label products. Over the years, Dean Foods has become a leading company when it comes to the production and distribution of dairy and soy-based milk products. It has extended its scope not only in different parts of the United States, but also in different parts of Europe, as well.
Headquarters: Dallas, Texas
Ownership Type: Public
No. of Employees: 25,780 (March 2011)
Geography: USA, Europe
Demography: dairy product consumers, soy-based milk consumers
Alpro Soya® , Horizon Organic®, International Delight®, Land O Lakes®, Silk ®, Swiss Premium®