Hain Celestial has announced it has agreed to acquire Welsh sweetener supplier Clarks to sit within its wholly-owned Hain Daniels UK business.

Clarks is based in Newport, South Wales and produces natural sweeteners under the Clarks brand, including maple syrup, honey and carob, date and agave syrups.

Clarks products are listed in major supermarkets as well as sold into the food service and industrial sectors. The company recently won a Grocer New Product Award for its Clarks Dreamy Caramel dessert topping.

In calendar year 2016, Clarks generated approximately £7 million in net sales and is expected to be accretive to Hain Celestial’s earnings in fiscal year 2019.

Terms of the deal were undisclosed.

Irwin Simon, chief executive of Hain Celestial, commented: “We welcome Bob Clark and his team to the Hain Celestial family and look forward to working with Clarks in expanding the brand’s development in the United Kingdom and continental Europe.”

“The Clarks brand and products are a strategic fit with the Hain Daniels spreads business for various natural sweeteners applications to complement our health and wellness portfolio of brands as consumers continue to seek to reduce their sugar intake and look for better-for-you alternatives to refined sugar.”

Hain Daniels CEO James Skidmore commented: “”I welcome our new colleagues within Clarks to the business and see significant opportunities to further develop the natural sweeteners category. The strength of the Clarks brand puts it in a strong position to capitalize on the growing consumer trends towards more natural and healthier foods.”

Hain was strongly linked amongst UK dealmakers with the current auction for nut butter brand Meridian. However, The Grocer revealed the Sun-Pat owner is not one of the contenders making second round bids.

Nonetheless, observers had expected Hain to continue making strategic bolt-on acquisitions despite the group hiring US consultancy Centerview Partners to conduct a strategic review of its business that could include a sale.

Reports in November linked Nestlé among the potential suitors exploring an acquisition of either the whole group or parts of the businesses.

Hain has bought a number of UK assets in recent years, including soup-maker Yorkshire Provender earlier this year and UK food and beverage group Orchard House Foods at the end of 2015.