LICKS turns Former Winona Candy Factory into Pet Vitamin Plant

Midwest Co-Pack purchased the former Ferrara Candy Company building to use as the primary supplier of The Pet Health People. The company is hoping to use the space to make gummi vitamins for dogs, among other products. The plant, built in 1940, had operated as a candy factory for several companies until April 2016.


Amy Paris, CEO of Midwest Co-Pack and The Pet Health People, said in a statement that the companies will work to grow upon previous success.


“My desire to vertically align (Pet Health People’s) supply chain, from production to fulfillment, has been our goal since inception, but it was important to find the right fit for our business,” Paris said. “The expertise of the staff at Midwest Co-Pack is unparalleled; I have no doubt that their input will not only support my already established business, but ensure that it continues to thrive.”

Winona Mayor Mark Peterson said that the city was lucky to have had someone take over the building in a relatively short time, and that it was a combined effort on the part of Winona’s Port Authority and other organizations to make the deal happen. Peterson said having this kind of manufacturing move back in is “remarkable.”


“All expectations are that this will be a growing company,” Peterson said.

The company’s said by using former plant employees, who have an average tenure of 25 years in food manufacturing, by adding new machinery, and through the growth of the pet vitamin company, they hope to produce tens of thousands of pounds of finished goods daily.

The Pet Health People produces the LICKS Pill Free Solutions, which they sell at various pet stores and online, and include gummi and liquid pet vitamins and health supplements for cats and dogs.

The company said it’s dedicated to using 100 percent natural and human grade ingredients for the supplements, which made a people food manufacturing plant a natural fit.

Summer Creighton