ConAgra Foods Inc. has acquired private-label pretzel producer National Pretzel Co. Terms of the deal were not disclosed, though ConAgra said the purchase price exceeds its $103 million purchase of Elan Nutrition in 2010.
The National Pretzel deal adds another private-label snack brand to ConAgra, which already makes store-branded snack bars and fruit snacks. National Pretzel makes private-label pretzel rods, sticks, braids and twists, and also owns pretzel brands HK Anderson and Shultz. Sales growth has been about 7 percent annually over the last three years. It has three manufacturing facilities in California and Pennsylvania, and around 700 employees.
ConAgra has been on the hunt for private-label food makers hopes of capitalizing on the significant growth of in-store brands in recent years. This acquisition comes on the heels of ConAgra’s failed takeover bid on Ralcorp Holdings, which recently bought the refrigerated-dough business of Sara Lee Corp. (Read about it here.)