Acquisition combines leading honey producers

by Monica Watrous
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Sweet Harvest Co. honey and nut butter products
Sweet Harvest Foods offers a range of honey products sold under the MEL-O brand and peanut butter products sold under the PB Crave brand.

ONSTED, MICH. — Natural American Foods, Inc., a portfolio company of an affiliate of private equity firm Peak Rock Capital, has acquired Sweet Harvest Foods Co., a Minneapolis-based producer and distributor of honey, peanut butter and syrup products. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Founded in 1923, Sweet Harvest Foods offers a range of honey products sold under the MEL-O brand and peanut butter products sold under the PB Crave brand.

Natural American Foods is a leading honey processor with operations in California and Michigan. The company produces honey under the Miller’s American brand, in addition to producing and distributing honey and commercial sweetener products for food manufacturers and food service customers. An affiliate of Peak Rock Capital acquired the Onsted-based company in January 2014.

Natural Harvest Miller's honey
Natural American Foods produces honey under the Miller’s American brand.

Natural American Foods’ acquisition of Sweet Harvest Foods joins two leading honey companies with a combined 200 years of operations.

“We are delighted to combine the Sweet Harvest and Natural American Foods businesses, further expanding the company’s capabilities and reach,” said Robert Strauss, director of Natural American Foods and a managing director of Peak Rock Capital. “The acquisition of Sweet Harvest is a great example of the kind of strategic transaction that Natural American Foods continues to seek in the natural sweetener industry.”

Curt Riess, president of Sweet Harvest Foods, will join the board of Natural American Foods, bringing more than 20 years of experience in the honey industry.

Curt Reiss, Natural Harvest
Curt Riess, president of Sweet Harvest Foods
“On behalf of myself, my wife, Darcy, and all Sweet Harvest employees, we are very excited to join the Natural American Foods team,” Mr. Riess said. “Sweet Harvest and Natural American Foods have each established strong reputations for producing high quality products and working to deliver outstanding customer service. I’m looking forward to our partnership and working with Natural American Foods’ talented management team to accelerate the growth of the combined businesses.” 
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