Dean Foods, the second largest dairy company in the United States, announced last week that it has become a majority stakeholder in vegan brand Good Karma. In May, Dean Foods invested an undisclosed amount in Good Karma Foods—which sells vegan flax based products such as yogurt and milk—in exchange for a minority stake in the company. “Good Karma is a fast-growing brand that gets us back into the growing plant-based food and beverage category, making it an excellent addition to our portfolio,” Dean Foods CEO Ralph Scozzafava said. “Our investment in Good Karma is just one example of how we are executing against one of the major pillars of our strategic plan to build and buy strong brands.” While Dean Foods now holds a majority stake in the vegan brand, Karma Foods will continue to employ its existing team members and operate as an independent brand. In May, Dean Foods divested from its dairy-based business by ending more than a dozen contracts with its dairy suppliers in Pennsylvania. Several dairy-centric brands have shifted their focus to plant-based products, including multinational company Danone, which acquired WhiteWave Foods (the parent company of vegan brands Silk, So Delicious, Vega, and Alpro) in 2016 for $12.5 billion and is currently developing plant-based alternatives within its popular Activia and Actimel lines of yogurt.
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