The owner of the Blue Buffalo pet-food brand, General Mills is to pay US$1.2bn for the assets, which include a production facility in Iowa.

Completion of the agreement, which is subject to regulatory approval, is expected to be completed by the end of its fiscal year, Arkansas-based Tyson said in a statement today (14 May.)

Tyson added its pet treats plant in Independence, Iowa, will provide meat ingredients to General Mills after the deal is concluded, while 300 workers employed at the site will transfer to the new owners.

The meat giant entered the pet-food category in 2010 with the launch of True Chews dog treats, followed by the Nudges and Top Chews brands in the next two consecutive years. The business generated sales of more than $240m in the financial year ended 3 April, the New York-listed company said.

General Mills’ pet-food division posted sales of $1.7bn last year out of group sales of $17.6bn. It acquired US business Blue Buffalo Pet Products for $8bn in 2018.

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“We’re proud of the tremendous success of this business and the diligent work by our team to meet growing demand for high-quality pet treats,” Noelle O’Mara, group president of prepared foods for Tyson, said. “We believe the time is right to transition these great brands to an established pet food’s business where they will complement their existing portfolio.”