Food makers could benefit from new Asian sourcing alliance

By Jane Byrne

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Food ingredients Europe European union

A deal between Barentz Europe with Rewe Food Ingredients (RFI) will bring economics of scale and potential cost reductions on Asian sourced food ingredients such as tartaric acid, malic acid and sweeteners for European brand owners, claims the alliance.

Netherlands-headquartered Barentz said it has acquired a majority share in Germany-based RFI but a spokesperson for the Dutch group would not disclose further details about the transaction. “At this moment it is a controlling stake that will increase during the next coming years. We will not communicate exact figures yet,”​ she told

The spokesperson for the Dutch group added that, in 2013, RFI will be renamed Barentz Food Ingredients (BFI).

Both companies have expertise in sourcing food ingredients from Asia, with the new partnership aimed at combining product portfolios and proficiency in logistics, said a joint statement from the suppliers.

In terms of each company’s role in the alliance, Barentz said it has its sourcing headquarterers for Asia in China and thus local contacts with Chinese suppliers, which "RFI can leverage​". While, RFI has long lasting relationships with other Asian suppliers, with which Barentz can liaise, continued the spokesperson.

“Barentz [also] has a presence in 26 European countries; so RFI will have more potential markets to sell their products to,”​ she added.

The Barentz Group, which had a turnover of €600m in 2011, is a privately owned raw material company active in distribution towards the food and other industries. It has previously boasted that it has strategy of being a "strong local supplier in every European market”​.

But it aims to invest in its production division, which it has stated as being “a cornerstone of our continued growth.”

In 2009, a new production division was formed at the group that formally brought together its three ingredients businesses under the same management – Barentz Ingredients, Vitablend and LI Frank.

RFI, a recognized specialist in the trade of food ingredients from Asia for the food, pharmaceutical and animal nutrition sectors, has a turnover of around €50m annually.

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