Mars subsidiary Masterfoods and Royal Canin of France have agreed to sell some of their merged pet food activities to Agrolimen of Spain. The move is intended to remove anti-competition obstacles to their merger.

The two companies will divest Royal Canin's exclusive pet food brands and two French production facilities. The disposals represent 150,000 tonnes of pet food volumes, valued at some €230m (US$208.4m) in sales.

In February the European Commission gave its conditional approval to Masterfoods' takeover of Royal Canin, which takes Mars to the top of the EU pet food sector.

Royal Canin Chairman Henri Lagarde said in a statement that the divestments represented "a substantial sacrifice in terms of sales, margins and markets, but they should lead the group to emphasise its strategy towards its clients and top-of-the-range health nutrition".