Calder Foods bought by US foodservice giant

By Matt Atherton

- Last updated on GMT

Calder Foods was bought by Flagship Food Group
Calder Foods was bought by Flagship Food Group

Related tags Catering

Sandwich fillings and sauces manufacturer Calder Foods has been bought by US multi-national foodservice firm Flagship Food Group for an undisclosed fee.

The Carlisle-based business had been looking for a buyer to inject cash into the firm. Founding members of Calder Foods Paul Baker and Nigel Harrison – who retained their positions as joint mds together with their shares in Flagship – said the deal was a “golden opportunity”​ for the business.

“We are delighted to be joining the Flagship ​[Food Group] family,”​ Baker and Harrison said in a joint statement. “The partnership provides a golden opportunity to develop the Calder Foods portfolio, taking advantage of Flagship Europe’s wider customer base in the foodservice sectors to promote sales.”

The perfect addition

New owner of the company Flagship Food Group said Calder Foods was the perfect addition for its product range, and it was already looking to further develop and grow the firm.

Flagship Europe ceo Russell Maddock said: “Calder Foods has an exceptional reputation within the foodservice sector, and their products will provide the perfect complement to our portfolio of food-to-go products for this marketplace.

“We look forward to a smooth transition and to further developing both the business and the ‘Love Fresh’ brand under the Flagship Europe umbrella.”

Calder Foods would still trade under the same name, Flagship confirmed.

‘Toughest decisions we ever had to make’

The chilled foods firm had offers from five separate businesses to buy the company. It said the final decision ultimately came down to two potential buyers, with Flagship’s offer eventually being accepted. Harrison and Baker said it was “one of the toughest business and personal decisions we have ever had to make”​.

Calder Foods manufactures a range of sandwich fillings, including chicken, seafood, egg and vegetarian recipes. It also makes mayonnaise, salads, dips and various sauces.

Meanwhile, food-to-go sales were expected to rise 6.8%​ between July 2015 and July 2016, according to grocery think-tank IGD.  It claimed the rapidly growing sector could provide big opportunities for growth, as the market was predicted to be worth £16.1bn by the end of this calendar year.

Calder Foods acquisition – at a glance

  • Bought by US foodservice firm Flagship Food Group
  • Continue to trade under same name
  • Founders described deal as “golden opportunity”

Related topics Chilled foods

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