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Frutarom splurges £3m on UK ingredients firm

By Ben Bouckley , 24-Jan-2011
Last updated on 24-Jan-2011 at 13:58 GMT

Frutarom Industries has hit the acquisition trail again, buying UK-based ingredients firm East Anglian Food Ingredients (EAFI) for £3m.

EAFI manufactures savoury ingredients such as flavours, seasonings and ingredients for the food industry, specialising in the convenience food, snacks, processed meat and fish sectors.

Under the terms of the deal, Israeli multinational Frutarom will acquire EAFI’s Clacton-on-Sea factory and research facility, which together employ 35 staff.

Frutarom has developed its EU base following a number of strategic acquisitions since 2005, include including ingredients and flavours firm Oxford Chemicals (2009) Christian Hansen (2009) Gewurzmuller (2007) and Gewurzmuller Nesse (2006).

Stronger entrance into UK market

Earlier this January the firm bought Norwegian company Rieber Industrial Spices Savoury for NOK 25m through another self-financed acquisition, to bolster its presence within the Scandinavian ingredients market.

EAFI was due to call FoodNavigator.com back regarding the news as we went to press, but Frutarom president Ori Yehudai said: “The acquisition … strengthens both Frutarom’s technological capabilities and its comprehensive product offering to our customers in the fields of savoury flavours and functional foods around the world.

“The acquisition of EAFI will allow Frutarom to widen its global customer base via a stronger entrance into the UK market. Frutarom is the leading local flavour manufacturer in the UK; however, until now our main focus in that market has been on the sweet spectrum of flavour.”

Global savoury flavours market growing

Yehudai added that Frutarom is continuing to pursue additional strategic acquisitions in a bid to double turnover to US $1bn within the next four years.

“Our sturdy capital structure, low net debt level, and the strong cash flow we achieve, along with the support of leading banks, will allow us to continue executing acquisitions,” he said.

Speaking after the Rieber purchase, Yehudai said: "The global market for savoury flavours is growing as a result of trends in improved quality-of-life and changes in consumer behaviour. Accordingly the consumption of processed and convenience foods has grown both inside and outside of the home.

“Frutarom has identified the savoury sector as an important growth engine and is investing accordingly in the development of unique and innovative products of high added value in its sites around the world.”

Frutarom is split into flavours and fine ingredient divisions, and employs over 1,500 staff. It sells products to over 10,000 customers in over 120 countries.

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