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Our History

The Early Years

In 1887 Luther Perrigo, the proprietor of a general store and apple-drying business, had the idea to package and distribute patented medicines and household items for country stores. Located in Allegan, Michigan, the L. Perrigo Company enjoyed steady growth and, by the early 1920s, Perrigo was exceeding the needs of its rural store customers throughout the Midwest.

Along the way, the company began leveraging the "private label" concept as a way to enhance customer loyalty. For no additional cost, Perrigo offered to imprint the individual store's name on the labels of epsom salts, sweet oil, bay rum and dozens of other wet and dry goods stocked in general stores.

Deep Roots in Manufacturing Excellence

Perrigo opened its first manufacturing facility in Allegan, Michigan in 1921 and signed its first, large private-label customer in the mid-1930s, paving the way for its conversion from a re-packager of home remedies to a manufacturer of affordable health care products. This shift in strategic direction drove Perrigo's growth over the next several decades and became the foundation for the Company's mission today.

A Growing Business

Perrigo's growth was driven further by the advent of Rx-to-over-the-counter ("OTC") switches, where prescription products began to become available over the counter. These Rx-to-OTC switches provided Perrigo with opportunities to launch new store brand versions of products such as Advil®, Tylenol®, Flonase®, Allegra®, Prilosec®, Nicorette® and many more. The store brand concept also began to gain popularity with retailers seeking to improve profitability and increase customer loyalty.

As Perrigo's consumer self-care presence continued to expand, the Company began to pursue partnerships and acquisitions of established businesses in order to expand its geographic footprint and product offerings. In 1997, Perrigo completed its first acquisition outside of the U.S. when it acquired Quimica y Farmacia (also known as Quifa), a Mexican-based private label OTC company. Perrigo then expanded further by adding businesses in the U.K. and Australia, which provided the company access to important new markets across the globe.

Perrigo's product portfolio expanded in 2005 with the addition of Agis Industries, which added a number of generic prescription pharmaceutical products, primarily focused on difficult to manufacture topical foams, lotions and gels. Over the subsequent years, the addition of new store brand OTC categories such as infant formula and animal health solidified Perrigo as a global leader in Quality Affordable Self-Care Products®.

In 2013, Perrigo acquired Elan Corporation plc, which provided a platform for further global expansion. In 2015, Perrigo completed the acquisition of Belgium-based Omega Pharma NV, one of the largest OTC self-care companies in Europe. This addition to the Perrigo portfolio added a pan-European-based organization focused on providing high-quality branded OTC products to consumers in approximately 30 countries.


Today, Perrigo is a leading global self-care company, focused on providing value to its customers and consumers by delivering Quality Affordable Self-Care Products®. Perrigo has built a unique business model that is best described as the convergence of a fast-moving consumer goods company, a high-quality pharmaceutical manufacturing organization and a world-class supply chain network. Perrigo is the world's largest manufacturer of OTC self-care products and supplier of infant formulas for the store brand market. The Company also is a leading provider of branded OTC products throughout Europe and the U.S., as well as a leading producer of "extended topical" prescription drugs. Perrigo, headquartered in Ireland, sells its products primarily in North America and Europe, as well as in other markets, including Australia, Israel and China.

Watch our Perrigo 125 Years video

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