Marchmallow fluff

Empire distributes US food products including Fluff

Asian foods specialist Bespoke Foods has been acquired by Empire Food Brokers - stakeholder in Burts Chips and distributor of US brands.

Empire said the move would double turnover to almost £30m, and was the latest step in a strategy to become one of the UK’s major fine food importers and distributors. Empire imports US brands including Fluff Marshmallow Spread and is a major stakeholder in crisps supplier Burts, while Bespoke has developed brands including Thai Taste.

The businesses would initially be managed independently but would combine expertise in areas such as logistics and purchasing, said Empire MD Chandresh Patel. He added that, instead of outsourcing its marketing, Empire could now use Bespoke’s in-house marketing team to help build brands.

“Moving forward, customers will benefit from the greater expertise of the merged teams,” he added. “There will be a broader depth of knowledge within the sectors the companies trade in.”

The deal would also boost the sourcing capabilities of the companies and give them a wider and more efficient distribution network, he said.

Burts Chips has boosted its provenance credentials by using local Cornish sea salt in its top-selling salt flavour.