Thursday, 8 May 2003

Dean Foods Realigns Organization to Sharpen Focus on Strategic Brands

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Thursday, 8 May 2003

DALLAS, May 8 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ — Dean Foods Company (NYSE: DF)
today announced several organizational changes designed to enhance the
company’s branded products strategy and to enable the company to realize
additional manufacturing efficiencies. The result of these changes will be to
create the Dean Branded Products Group, which will be responsible for
marketing and selling Dean’s nationally branded products, and to transfer all
of the company’s private label dairy products and all dairy manufacturing
assets to the Dean Dairy Group.

Over the balance of 2003, responsibility for manufacturing, selling and
distributing Morningstar Foods’ extensive portfolio of private label, long
shelf-life dairy products will be shifted to the company’s Dairy Group.
Morningstar Foods will be renamed Dean Branded Products Group, and all of
Morningstar Foods’ manufacturing facilities for both branded and private label
products will be transferred to the Dairy Group, which will act as a
manufacturing and distribution partner for the Dean Branded Products Group.

The Dean Branded Products Group will be focused on the company’s strategic
brand portfolio, which currently includes International Delight(R) coffee
creamers, Hershey’s(R) milks and milkshakes, Land O Lakes(R) extended-shelf
life dairy products, Folgers(R) Jakada(R) single-serve chilled coffee and milk
beverage, Marie’s(R) dips and dressings and Dean’s(R) dips. The Dean Branded
Products Group will sell and market the company’s nationally branded products
and will add to its portfolio over time through the development or acquisition
of new and innovative value-added products.

“This is an important step to sharpen our focus, lower our cost structure
and capitalize on our competitive advantages,” said Gregg Engles, chairman and
chief executive officer of Dean Foods. “The creation of the Dean Branded
Products Group will give us, for the first time, an organization solely and
completely focused on driving the growth of our strategic brands. As we
increasingly invest in branded growth, the Dean Branded Products Group is
where we intend to invest in the resources necessary for success.

“The shift of Morningstar’s private label dairy business into the Dairy
Group will allow us to capitalize on our position as the nation’s leading
dairy supplier by significantly expanding our Dairy Group’s product offerings
and simplifying our customers’ supply chain,” continued Engles. “Moreover,
consolidation of all domestic dairy manufacturing within the Dairy Group will
create significant plant rationalization opportunities as we continue to lower
our cost structure.”

The company also announced the resignation of Herman “Bing” Graffunder,
president of Morningstar Foods. Graffunder is leaving to pursue other
interests, and will remain with the company through July 1. “Bing’s
contributions to our company have been significant. We have been fortunate to
have had the benefit of his talent and expertise over the last several years,”
said Engles.

The company noted that it has begun a targeted search for an individual to
lead the Dean Branded Products Group and intends to complete the search
quickly. In the interim, Engles will work closely with Graffunder and the
Morningstar leadership team to ensure a smooth transition.

White Wave, maker of Silk(R), Sun Soy(R) and White Wave(R) soy products,
will continue to be managed and run separately in Boulder, Co., under the
leadership of Steve Demos, president and founder. Demos will continue to
report directly to Engles. Jim Greisinger, president of Specialty Foods, will
continue in his role, and will now report directly to Engles.

“We remain committed to driving increased shareholder value, and I am
confident that these changes will enable us to become a stronger organization,
capable of capturing the tremendous opportunities ahead,” Engles concluded.

For segment reporting purposes, 2003 will be treated as a transition year
during which segment results will be reported consistently with prior years.
Realignment of the Dairy Group and the Branded Products Group is expected to
be complete by January 2004. At that time, a new segment reporting structure
will be established, and the operating results of the new Dean Foods Branded
Products Group will be aggregated with White Wave, thereby reflecting only the
results of the strategic brand portfolio. The Dairy Group segment will then
include the results of Morningstar Foods’ current private-label business, in
addition to its historical fluid dairy operations.

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
manufacturer 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.

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
to the company’s expectation that it will benefit from its re-aligned
organization structure, including specifically through lowering its cost
structure and enhancing its branded product strategy. These statements
involve risks and uncertainties which may cause results to differ materially
from the statements set forth in this press release. The company’s ability to
profit from its branding initiatives will depend on a number of factors,
including primarily consumer acceptance of the company’s products. The
company’s ability to meaningfully lower its cost structure within the
projected timeframe will also depend on a number of factors, including whether
and how quickly it can identify and implement cost saving initiatives. The
forward-looking statements in this press release speak only as of the date of
this release. The company 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.

Contact: Cory Olson
Senior Vice President and Treasurer
(214) 303-3645

P.I. Aquino
Assistant Treasurer
(214) 303-3437

SOURCE Dean Foods Company
-0- 05/08/2003
/CONTACT: Cory Olson, Senior Vice President and Treasurer,
+1-214-303-3645, or P.I. Aquino, Assistant Treasurer, +1-214-303-3437, both of
Dean Foods Company/
/Web site: /

CO: Dean Foods Company
ST: Texas

— DATH019 —
8826 05/08/2003 05:55 EDT

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