Ed Bedington
One of the UK's leading meat processors has expanded its operations with the purchase of Glanbia Fresh Meats.
In the deal, Flagship Foods has bought two factories from international dairy and consumer foods giant Glanbia for an undisclosed sum. The company will be renamed Flagship Fresh Meats.
Graham Roach, chief executive of Flagship Foods, said the move was significant for the British pigmeat sector: "The decline of British pig numbers is forcing further rationalisation within primary processing to retain the advantages of economies of scale."
Flagship has a turnover of more than £400m, employs 3,200 and is made up of Dalehead Foods, a leading supplier of pork and lamb to the multiples and manufacturers, and Roach Foods, a supplier of bacon and cooked meats to the retail and foodservice sectors.
The acquisition involves two manufacturing sites in the West Midlands producing fresh pork products for supermarkets and the manufacturing sector, with an abattoir at West Bromwich and a butchery and packing plant at Tipton. The business has a turnover of about £100m and a workforce of 700, all of which will be kept in place. Roach said the acquisition was entirely complementary to the Flagship operations and would offer further synergies for the benefit of present and future customers, as well as for the group.
Tony Ambler, Flagship Foods chairman, said: "We are delighted to have completed the purchase of the Glanbia West Midlands operations and look forward to working with the management and staff to bring further benefits to our customers, farmer suppliers and our group."
Current MD of the Glanbia business, Malcolm Longley, will remain in place.
Glanbia is currently considering the future of the final remaining plant in Glanbia Fresh Meats. The company said it was consulting with staff over whether to cease operations at Gainsborough which currently employs 80 people.