Strong rumours in Naples this week suggested that Princes Foods was negotiating to buy the internationally famous Italian canned tomato products brand, Napolina, from Unilever Bestfoods. Although there have been no comments from either party, the move would increase the acquisitive Princes' stake in the tomato products business, giving a massive boost to its profile as a trader in Italian items. Napolina was founded by the late, charismatic, Marino Landiorio whose efforts in the 1970s and 1980s took the brand to national status in the face of intense competition from other Italian labels. After building a £30m business, in 1987 he surprised the trade by selling Napolina to American foods conglomerate CPC (later Bestfoods) for £5 million. {{NEWS }}