Hain expands share of European non-dairy sector

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Germany, Europe

The US-based natural food group Hain Celestial is snapping up
German manufacturer of soy, oat and rice-based drinks Natumi,
expanding its operations in Europe and giving it access to a
non-dairy production facility in the region.

The Hain​ group, which previously sold supplements under its Celestial Seasonings teas brand, bought into the European market with the acquisition of Lima, a Belgian natural and organic foods manufacturer, in 2001.

But the acquisition of Natumi will allow it to produce its rice and soy-based products closer to its growing European customer base.

The German company, with 36 employees and sales last year of €3 million, according to Creditreform German Companies, sells its Milkfree brand drinks and desserts principally to retail channels in Europe.

The price paid was not disclosed but Hain said it did not expect incremental revenue and income to be material in the coming year.

The rapidly expanding firm has however recently reported the highest sales and profit levels in its 10 year history for the second quarter on the back of increasing consumer demand for healthy products.

It has also made an entry into the functional beverages sector on its home market, with the launch of a cholesterol-lowering rice-based drink (with added phytosterols) and juices fortified with lutein.

There is growing demand​ for non-dairy products in Europe, with Organic Monitor predicting a sales rise of 22 per cent to €228 million in 2002.

Bruno Fischer, founder of Natumi​, will remain with the company's operations in Europe.

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