Monday, 5 January 2004

Dean Foods Company Completes Acquisition of Horizon Organic Holding Corporation

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Monday, 5 January 2004

Dean Foods Committed to Future Growth of #1 Organic Milk, Dairy and Juice Brand in the United States and #1 Organic Milk Brand in the United Kingdom

DALLAS and BOULDER, Colo., Jan 05, 2004 /PRNewswire-FirstCall via Comtex/ — Dean Foods
Company (NYSE: DF) announced today the completion of the acquisition of
Horizon Organic Holding Corporation (Nasdaq: HCOW). Dean Foods acquired the
87% equity interest in Horizon Organic it did not already own for
approximately $216 million in cash, or $24 per share, and the assumption of
approximately $40 million in debt.

Horizon Organic markets the leading brand of certified organic foods in
the United States and the leading brand of certified organic milk in both the
United States and the United Kingdom. Horizon Organic’s product line in the
United States includes organic milk, a full line of organic dairy products and
organic juices, pudding, fruit jels and eggs. In the U.K., the company
markets organic milk, yogurt and butter under the Rachel’s Organic brand.

“We are extremely pleased to complete the acquisition of Horizon Organic,
the number one organic milk and dairy brand in the country,” said Gregg
Engles, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Dean Foods. “We remain
committed to the growth of healthy, better-for-you products and will build
upon Horizon Organic’s passion and commitment to organic foods.”

“We are very excited about closing the transaction and the opportunities
ahead for Horizon Organic as a partner with Dean Foods. We look forward to
accelerating our growth and strengthening the leadership position and
leveraging Dean Foods’ substantial processing, distribution and marketing
resources,” said Chuck Marcy, President and Chief Executive Officer of Horizon
Organic. “We are confident that this combination will ensure the future
growth and extension of both the Horizon Organic and Rachel’s Organic brands.”

About Horizon Organic

Horizon Organic Holding Corporation markets the leading brand of certified
organic foods in the U.S. and the leading certified brand of organic milk in
both the U.S. and the U.K. In the U.S. its products include organic milk, a
full-line of organic dairy products, organic eggs and juices. In the U.K.,
the Company markets organic yogurt, milk and butter under the Rachel’s Organic
brand. For more information, please visit the Company’s web site at
www.horizonorganic.com .

About Dean Foods

Dean Foods Company is one of the nation’s leading food and beverage
companies. The company produces a full line of company-branded and private
label dairy products such as milk and milk-based beverages, ice cream, coffee
creamers, half and half, whipping cream, whipped toppings, sour cream, cottage
cheese, yogurt, dips, dressings and soy milk. The company is also a leading
supplier of pickles and other specialty food products, juice, juice drinks and
water. The company operates over 120 plants in 36 U.S. states and Spain, and
employs approximately 28,000 people.

Note on Forward Looking Statements: Some of the statements in this press
release are “forward-looking” and are made pursuant to the safe harbor
provision of the Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These “forward-
looking” statements include statements relating generally to the Dean Food’s
ability to profit from the Horizon Organic acquisition and to grow the Horizon
Organic(R) and Rachel’s Organic(R) brands as expected. These statements
involve risks and uncertainties that may cause results to differ materially
from the statements set forth in this press release. Dean Foods’ ability to
profit from its branding initiatives will depend on a number of factors,
including primarily customer acceptance of Horizon Organic’s products. The
forward-looking statements in this press release speak only as of the date of
this release. Dean Foods expressly disclaims any obligation or undertaking to
release publicly any updates or revisions to such statements to reflect any
change in its expectations with regard thereto or any changes in the events,
conditions or circumstances on which any such statement is based.

Contacts:

Dean Foods

Cory M. Olson

SVP and Treasurer

(214) 303-3645

P.I. Aquino

Assistant Treasurer

(214) 303-3437

Horizon Organic

Tom Briggs

SVP and Chief Financial Officer

303.530.2711 x 230

Jennifer J. Matuschek

Director of Investor Relations

303.530.2711 x178

SOURCE Dean Foods Company

Cory M. Olson, SVP and Treasurer, +1-214-303-3645, or P.I.
Aquino, Assistant Treasurer, +1-214-303-3437, both of Dean Foods Company; or
Tom Briggs, SVP and Chief Financial Officer, ext. 230, or Jennifer J.
Matuschek, Director of Investor Relations, ext. 178, both of Horizon Organic
Holding Corporation, +1-303-530-2711

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