Ditching the Cambridgeshire-based company means the multiple now has three potato suppliers - Greenvale AP, Hoché International and QV Foods.
The move is particularly good news for Shropshire-based Greenvale, which will pick up the extra orders left when MBM’s contract with Sainsbury finishes in seven months’ time.
Around 300 growers supply Sainsbury through Greenvale, Hoché and QV. Some growers supplying through MBM will be invited to work with the new supply base from the summer.
Sainsbury buying manager John Maylam said: “By streamlining our potato supply base we are in a much better position to improve efficiencies for everyone in the supply chain, which means we will be able to serve our customers better. We recognise the consequences that our decision will have on MBM. By giving over seven months’ notice, we believe that all current commitments to product undertaken by growers in our name will be honoured. We will be working closely with MBM to manage these changes.”
Alan Owens, chief executive of Greenvale, said: “In addition to providing security of employment for our existing employees, this new business will also generate an additional 130 new jobs.
“We will obviously be looking to new growers who wish to supply us in the future and are delighted with the faith shown by Sainsbury in Greenvale.”
Sainsbury is undertaking a review of its entire supply base, led by new trading director Mike Coupe, formerly Iceland MD. In October the multiple cut its fresh beef supply base to just one company. More suppliers look set to lose out in 2005.