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Source: VFG

The Vegan Food Group will pursue more deals to add to a growing portfolio

VFC Foods is on the hunt for more deals in 2024 as part of ambitions to become “a vegan Unilever”, with Veganuary founder Matthew Glover taking a more hands-on role at the group this year.

It comes as the plant-based supplier changes the company name to the Vegan Food Group (VFG), following on from a year of expansion in 2023 when it rescued Meatless Farm from administration and acquired pie brand Clive’s Purely Plants.

Glover, who founded VFC with partner Adam Lyons in 2020 as a vegan version of KFC, will work more closely with the management team of VFG in a newly created role of chief mission officer.

Dave Sparrow, who will continue to lead the company as CEO, said the new corporate identity marked “a crucial milestone” in VFG’s growth strategy.

“We are already one of the most diversified players in the category with VFC, Meatless Farm and Clive’s under our umbrella, but it won’t stop there,” he added.

“We are actively reviewing strategic acquisitions to add to the group in 2024, building upon a successful 2023 trading year.”

Glover, who also runs plant-based investment firm Veg Capital, said further consolidation was needed in the vegan category, but added he was seeing early signs of a rebound following a difficult year for the sector in 2023.

“VFG is well positioned to capitalise on market conditions and supercharge growth in the UK and Europe,” he said.

Glover added the group’s strategy mirrored that of global food giants, with consolidation helping to streamline operations, drive efficiencies, leverage buying power, optimise supply chains and foster innovation.

“Imagine a vegan Unilever, but with the majority of future profits being donated to effective animal charities and diet change initiatives – that’s what we’re creating at the Vegan Food Group,” he said.

VFG now boasts a range of 80 SKUs across 21,000 distribution points, with a raft of NPD launched this month already.