Meijer acquires Michigan dairy

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Mass merchandise chain Meijer has acquired a Michigan-based dairy, the company said.

Meijer announced the purchase of Bareman's Dairy, a family-owned company based in Holland, Mich., and the intention of investing more than $8 million into expansion of the plant.

"This is an exciting day for our company," Meijer co-chairman and CEO Hank Meijer said. "As Meijer continues to grow, it's crucial we invest in the operations that will help us keep our promise of higher standards and lower prices to our customers. Expanding into dairy operations will do just that."

The company also announced the creation of the Purple Cow Creamery, which will supply white and chocolate milk to Meijer's stores in Michigan. Meijer said that while it would be several months before it started shipping milk products to Meijer stores, the chain would assume ownership of dairy plant operations starting on Monday, and Carlinville, Ill.-based Prairie Farms Dairy would acquire the Bareman's Dairy brand and the dairy's distribution centers.

"The creation of the Purple Cow Creamery is an important step forward as we continue to expand our manufacturing operations," Meijer EVP supply chain and manufacturing Rick Keyes said. "Producing our own Meijer brand milk allows us to continue to focus on keeping our prices low for our customers while also reducing the number of food miles for a very important product."