WestFeeds has reached an agreement with Cargill to purchase their Billings feed mill and property, with the sale expected to be finalized by the middle of February.
"We are pleased by the opportunities that Cargill's Billings feed operations present for our customers," said Scott Black, president and chief executive officer of Westfeeds. "This agreement further underscores our dedication to serving the animal nutrition needs of our customers as we strive towards our vision of being the premier provider of animal nutrition in the Northern Plains." says Scott Black, WestFeeds CEO and president. "We'd like to see ourselves grow our market share in Montana and Wyoming and I'm very optimistic we can,"
The plant, a medicated feed mill at 1406 Industrial Ave, has a capacity of 50,000 tonnes and was originally built by Farr Better Feeds in 1968, before being acquired by Cargill in 1991.
In a statement issued Tuesday, Cargill said it was streamlining its bagged feed operations by shifting production to other facilities. WestFeeds will take control of the facility and shutter a smaller bulk feed plant by March.
Between higher feed pricing and lower livestock payments, ranchers have weathered a couple tough years, Black said, but animal and agriculture markets are cyclical and WestFeeds expects the economy to improve.
Cargill Animal Nutrition produces a variety of bulk cattle feeds at the facility for the region's beef and dairy producers. With this agreement, Cargill will continue to produce bagged feeds, pet food, and its proprietary ROC® mineral product, among other offerings, throughout the region at other Cargill facilities.
"Under this arrangement, we are placing a valued feed manufacturing asset in the hands of a local organization that shares our commitment to this market and its livestock customers," said Karl Thoene, general manager for Cargill Animal Nutrition's Pacific Northwest region. "Through an exclusive, bulk-feed toll manufacturing agreement with Westfeeds and by shifting our bagged feed manufacturing focus to other Cargill regional facilities, we streamline our operations and better utilize our regional capabilities to improve our customer offerings. This agreement combines Westfeeds' manufacturing expertise with Cargill's nutritional expertise, thereby bringing additional value to customers throughout Montana and northern Wyoming."
WestFeeds was established in 2003 after a group of local investors purchased the Montana based feed assets of ConAgra. The company manufactures and distributes quality livestock and companion animal nutrition products serving the Northern Plains region with locations in Billings, Great Falls, Lewistown and Miles City, Montana.