Callebaut eyes European leadership for nut products with La Morella acquisition
The acquisition is expected to create synergies between the business segments of chocolate and nut products.
The company has also indicated that it gives it scope to expand nut production in Asia-Pacific and the Americas.
Raphael Wermuth, external communications manager for Barry Callebaut, told ConfectioneryNews.com: “In general, we see a growing trend for fillings, also for example for nut-based fillings.”
“In addition, we see a growing trend for nut-based inclusions. That is why La Morella Nuts' product portfolio is interesting for us and complementing our product portfolio in the Gourmet and Food Manufacturers Products business in an ideal way.”
La Morella produces nut-based ingredients for confectionery, bakery and snacks industry in Europe.
Its manufactures specialty nut products which were not previously part of Callebaut’s portfolio including cashews, pecans, pistachios, and macadamias.
The company has 90 employees operating across two plants in Castellvell del Camp and Reus where it manufactures around 8,000 tonnes of nut specialities annually.
The company recorded sales revenues of €33m in 2011.
In the past few years it has entered markets in Russia and Asia.
La Morella will be integrated into Callebaut’s business Region Europe later this month.
Joaquim M. Barriach, CEO of La Morella Nuts, said the deal would help La Morella expand its market reach with chocolate synergies.
“Barry Callebaut makes it possible for us to better position ourselves as a premier manufacturer of quality nuts," he said.
Potential beyond EU
Wermuth said that Callebaut’s customer preference for nut based products was a global trend.
“That is also why we see an interesting potential with the recent acquisition to expand to our other regions like Asia-Pacific or Americas,” he said.
Asked if there were further plans to expand nut production capacity beyond Europe, Wermuth said that it was too early to say.