DAD'S Pet Care® to Honor Founder and Expand Corporate Mission by Announcing a New Parent Company, Ainsworth Pet Nutrition®

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America’s oldest privately-owned pet food company is reorganizing under a new corporate umbrella company called Ainsworth Pet Nutrition®.

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We have made several acquisitions and investments to expand our capabilities and have added exciting new products to our portfolio

America’s oldest privately-owned pet food company is reorganizing under a new corporate umbrella company called Ainsworth Pet Nutrition®. DAD’S Pet Care® was founded in 1933 by George Ainsworth Lang Sr., and his father. The new structure will help the company better represent its more diversified product portfolio developed through a series of strategic business initiatives over the past decade.

“We have made several acquisitions and investments to expand our capabilities and have added exciting new products to our portfolio,” said Sean Lang, CEO of Ainsworth Pet Nutrition and the great-great-grandson of the company’s founder. “The company has evolved from a small regional business to a multi-tiered North American organization that makes a wide spectrum of pet foods and snacks. We’re excited that our new name honors Granddad Ainsworth and his life-long focus – creating nutritious, high quality foods and treats for dogs and cats.”

Series of Aggressive Acquisitions and Innovations Lead to Reorganization
Ainsworth Pet Nutrition is the result of an ambitious strategic plan aimed at expanding the company’s product and production capabilities. The company has made investments in the following companies:

  •     Hampshire Pet Products (organic certified facility for baked food and snacks);
  •     Targeted Pet Treats (injection formed snacks and chews);
  •     Gaines of Canada;
  •     Back to Basics® (ultra premium dog food);
  •     Arkat Animal Nutrition.

Each of these businesses specializes in unique product and/or production technologies. ARKAT Animal Nutrition was acquired in February 2010, providing new manufacturing facilities and two well-known specialty pet food brands, VF Complete® and Enhance®. A more than $10 million investment in new state-of-the-art manufacturing enhancements and a 70 percent increase in the workforce at the Dumas, Ark. facility were announced in June 2010.

Internal product innovations have also paved the way for growth. Rachael Ray NutrishTM dog food arrived on store shelves in 2008, and Rachael Ray Nutrish Just 6TM dog treats and The SourceTM dog treats were introduced in 2010.

Company Reorganizes Into Three Business Units
DAD’S Pet Care will continue to operate as one of three business units now part of Ainsworth Pet Nutrition. Ainsworth Specialty BrandsTM and Ainsworth CustomTM are the other two divisions.

“Our reorganization ensures that each of our business units and brands have the R&D, innovation, funding and focus they deserve,” said Lang. “We’ve also established dedicated teams of marketing experts and sales professionals who can address the needs of each specific business.”

Food safety is the number one priority across all three business units. “We ensure premium ingredient quality, precise cooking methods and a focus on safety that is unsurpassed in the marketplace today,” said Lang. “In fact, Ainsworth Pet Nutrition is the first pet food manufacturer in the U.S. to earn a Safe Quality Foods rating of Excellent, the highest rating that can be attained through the Level 2, Global Food Safety Initiative.”

Ainsworth Specialty Brands
Ainsworth Specialty Brands caters to pet owners who require specialized, ultra premium nutrition for their pet. The brands in the Ainsworth Specialty Brands portfolio deliver the highest ingredient quality and advanced nutrition science. Products are all manufactured in facilities owned by Ainsworth Pet Nutrition right here in the United States.

Ainsworth Specialty Brands ultra-premium pet products are sold exclusively to specialty stores as well as farm and feed retail outlets. The products include:

  •     VF Complete: Approachable nutrition with all natural ingredients;
  •     Enhance: The all-season nutrition solution for high performance sporting dogs;
  •     Back to Basics: Grain-free ultra-premium pet foods and treats that deliver uncomplicated, holistic pet nutrition;
  •     The SourceTM: Premium ingredients with a purpose for pets’ overall health and well-being.

“These brands are uniquely designed to address the specialized needs of certain pets,” said Lang. “This winter we are re-launching Back to Basics which will play an entirely different role in the category in 2011.”

DAD’S Pet Care
The DAD’S Pet Care division houses brands and selective retailer brands that provide sound nutrition, value and convenience. They include:

  •     DAD’S®: A full line of affordably-priced dog and cat foods made with ingredients sourced from local farms;
  •     Rachael Ray Nutrish: Premium nutrition for pets with simple, natural ingredients. The Nutrish food line features meat as the first ingredient and no by-products. Rachael Ray’s proceeds go to help animals in need;
  •     Kibble Select CompleteTM: The perfect combination of great taste and great nutrition for dogs;
  •     Better Than: Surprising, clever and unexpected dog treats that are safe and healthy.

“The DAD’S brands will continue to be a keystone of our growth plans and have satisfied multiple generations of dogs using locally sourced ingredients,” Lang emphasized.

Rachael Ray Nutrish has been a significant charitable endeavor. Rachael Ray donates her proceeds from the sale of Nutrish to help animals in need through Rachael’s RescueTM. More than $1 million has been raised since the product line launched in Fall 2008.

The Dad’s Pet Care business unit will also continue to serve the needs of retailers through development and supply of innovative retailer brands. “We approach these brands as if they are our own by applying our marketing expertise and resources to further their development,” explained Lang.

Ainsworth Custom
This division caters to business partners who require custom solutions to fit their unique needs. Ainsworth Custom goes beyond providing manufacturing services by also supporting product and brand development. This custom manufacturing division produces a wide variety of super-premium brands. "We produce innovative products for more than 30 ultra premium brands across our matrix," said Elliott Haverlack, Ainsworth Pet Nutrition's chief operating officer.

Ainsworth Pet Nutrition Experiences Record Growth Despite Recession
While many businesses across the United States have struggled in recent years, Ainsworth Pet Nutrition has flourished. In fact, the company has experienced more than 100 percent organic (not counting acquisitions) growth since 2006, and the company has tripled its investment in marketing, sales and R&D departments during this period.

“Pet food is the only thing we do and it’s the only thing we’ve ever done in our 77 year history,” said Lang. “Our family has always been dedicated to pet parents and their furry family members, and that focus will continue as we make aggressive investments in growth and innovation over the months and years ahead. Granddad Ainsworth always taught the younger Langs about the temporary nature of success, and we continue to work hard to earn the trust of our pet parents every day.”

About Ainsworth Pet Nutrition®
Ainsworth Pet Nutrition® is a fifth generation family-owned and operated company named after one of the company founders, George Ainsworth Lang. The company is focused entirely on pets, catering to all segments of the pet food industry. Ainsworth Pet Nutrition has three business units including DAD’S Pet Care®, Ainsworth Specialty BrandsTM and Ainsworth CustomTM. The company makes a wide spectrum of pet foods and snacks, from brands that offer sound nutrition and convenience to ultra-premium specialty foods. Ainsworth Pet Nutrition is committed to food safety and manufactures all of its pet food in the United States using whole grains and quality meats that can be traced throughout the entire supply chain. To learn more, visit http://www.ainsworthpets.com.

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Patti Jo Lambert

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