Premier Foods has agreed to buy the UK and Ireland businesses of Campbell Soup Company for £450m.

The deal gives Premier Foods control of brands including Oxo, Batchelors, Homepride and Fray Bentos.

In the year to end 31 July, 2005, Campbell's UK business recorded sales of £263m.

Premier Foods said that it would integrate Campbell's UK into its core grocery business, adding that it was an excellent strategic fit for the company.

Robert Schofield, chief executive of Premier Foods, said: “The Campbell's UK business fits Premier like a glove. This acquisition will bring an excellent portfolio of powerful and iconic brands which we intend to drive forward with increased resource and innovation.”

Campbell Soup Company said in March this year that it was exploring strategic alternatives, including possible divestiture, for its UK and Ireland business following a review of its international portfolio.

And following weeks of speculation, Premier Foods admitted earlier this week that it was in talks with Campbell Soup Company over its UK and Ireland business.