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General Mills

From Academic Kids

Template:Infobox Company General Mills Template:NYSE is a corporation, mainly concerned with food products, that is headquartered in Golden Valley, Minnesota, a suburb of Minneapolis. The company markets such brands as Betty Crocker, Nestlé, Yoplait, and Pillsbury, as well as numerous well-known breakfast cereals (see below).

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History

The company can trace its history to the Minneapolis Milling Company, an organization founded in 1856 by Cadwallader C. Washburn which leased power rights to mills operating along Saint Anthony Falls on the Mississippi River. His brother William D. Washburn also assisted in the company's development. In 1866, the Washburns got into the business themselves, building the Washburn "B" Mill at the falls. At the time, the building was considered to be so large and output so vast that it could not possibly sustain itself. However, the company succeeded and in 1874 he built the even bigger Washburn "A" Mill.

In 1877, the mill entered a partnership with John Crosby to form the Washburn-Crosby Company. A year later, the "A" mill exploded, killing 17 workers and also demolishing several nearby buildings. The mill was rebuilt and continued to operate for several decades. In the 1920s, the company stepped in to take over a failing Twin Cities radio station, renaming it WCCO.

General Mills was created in 1928 when Washburn-Crosby President James Ford Bell directed his company to merge with 26 other mills.

In 1988, General Mills sold General Mills Specialty Retail Group, which was the parent company of both Eddie Bauer (sold to Spiegel, Inc.) and Talbots.

In 1990, General Mills and Nestlé started a 50/50 joint venture called Cereal Partners Worldwide to market breakfast cereals for both the United States and Europe. CPW distributes cereals manufactured by both companies under the Nestlé brand name.

The company merged with Pillsbury in 2001. While many of the Pillsbury-branded products are still manufactured by General Mills, some products had to be sold off to allow the merger since the new company would have held a very strong monopoly position. Some products carrying the Pillsbury name, such as cake mixes, are now sold by The J. M. Smucker Co.

In October of 2004, the General Mills monster-themed triple pack breakfast cereals were introduced in supermarkets and wholesale retail stores, featuring Boo Berry (blueberry-flavoured), Count Chocula (chocolate-flavoured), and Franken Berry (strawberry-flavoured).

In late 2004, the company transitioned its entire breakfast cereal line to whole grain. This was partially due to the low-carbohydrate diet craze that had been sweeping the United States in the early 2000s decade, but was also influenced by research indicating that highly-refined grains can have detrimental health effects. Also, in 2004, General Mills was named one of the 100 Best Companies for Working Mothers by Working Mothers magazine.

Breakfast cereals

Frozen pizza

Other brands

External links

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