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The PET Story

PET Dairy's commitment to producing quality, great-tasting dairy products goes all the way back to 1885, when Swiss immigrant, John Meyenberg, brought a revolutionary process for canning milk to the small town of Highland, Illinois.

His company was called the Helvetia Milk Condensing Company. It quickly gained a reputation, particularly in the South, as a substitute for fresh milk where there was little refrigeration, and as a safe, wholesome and convenient baby food. When the company began packaging the condensed milk in baby-sized cans in 1894, the employees nicknamed the package "pet" evaporated cream, and that's how the PET brand was originated.

In 1929, Helvetia purchased a fluid milk processing plant in Johnson City, Tennessee, and The PET Dairy Products Company was founded. Soon after, the company acquired their first ice cream plant in nearby Greeneville, Tennessee.

PET Dairy grew quickly, as a number of other dairy operations were promptly acquired and new plants constructed. And, with the help of some innovative marketing – including popular radio shows and even a line of children's books devoted to PET products – PET became a household name in the South, as did classic products like PET Brown Mules.

Rapid technological advances in transportation and refrigeration allowed PET to expand, delivering PET fresh products to more and more customers.

PET Dairy holds the same commitment to bringing customers the freshest, best-tasting dairy products possible. And with PET products being sold all across the South today, more people than ever are falling in love with PET.

PET Dairy is proud to license the PET trademark.

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