Kerry has not provided further comment. However, it is understood that Springthyme’s directors will stay on at the company.
Springthyme makes infused oils: intensely flavoured oils that have been steeped with fresh ingredients, heated rapidly for maximum flavour release and then filtered.
These have gradually replaced dried herbs and flavoured oils in many soups, dressings and other prepared foods owing to their intense flavour and clean-label status. They are also sold to bottling companies for own-label and branded oil ranges for the retail market.
Springthyme recently scored an industry first with the development of unusual semi-solid infused fats (bakery shortenings) that have been heated up, infused with fresh herbs and spices, and then cooled down again.
These enable food manufacturers to develop more unusual premium products such as chilli-flavoured pastry for sausage rolls and herb-flavoured pizza bases.
Established in 1992, Springthyme operates from a purpose-built factory in Padiham, Lancashire, which opened in 2005.