ConAgra Bids for A Great Bowl of Private Brand Cereal

Shares of Private Brand cereal manufacturing giant Ralcorp jumped on Friday after CNBC said ConAgra national brand owner of such brands as Egg Beaters, Healthy Choice, Hunt’s, Orville Redenbacher’s, and PAM as well as numerous Private Brand products had made an unsolicited bid for the manufacturer and that talks were “no longer ongoing.”

ConAgra sent the letter to Ralcorp approximately two months ago, the cable television channel reported. ConAgra, has been struggling with increases in costs of commodities such as gas, dairy and wheat. Ralcorp — which sells a wide range of products such as pasta, cereals, corn snack products, syrups and salad dressings — has grown through acquisitions buying as many as 20 companies in the past 10 years including American Italian Pasta for $1.2 billion last year.

A merger this size could have a far reaching impact on both Private Brands and American consumers.

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Christopher Durham
Christopher Durham is the president of My Private Brand and the co-founder of The Vertex Awards. He is a strategist, author, consultant and retailer who built brands at Delhaize-owned Food Lion, and lead strategy and brand development for Lowe’s Home Improvement. He has consulted with retailers around the world on their private brand portfolios including: Family Dollar, Petco, Staples, Office Depot, Best Buy, Metro (Canada), TLW (Taiwan) and Hola (Taiwan). Durham has published five definitive books on private brands, including his first book, Fifty2: The My Private Brand Project. In 2017, he will debut his newest book, Vanguard: Vintage Originals, a visual tour of innovation and disruption in private brand going back to the mid-1800’s. Dynamic in his presentation while down to earth and frank in his opinions, he has presented at numerous conferences, including FUSE, The Dieline Conference, Packaging that Sells, Omnishopper and PLMA’a annual trade show in Chicago. Durham lives in Charlotte, NC with his wife, Laraine, and two daughters, Olivia and Sarah.