The business will continue to trade under the Dunbia brand in the UK, with the same management team across its 12 processing sites across the market.
Dawn Meats chief executive Niall Browne said: “Combining our operations in the UK has been a strategic success based on a strong cultural fit between two family-owned businesses that shared a deep connection to farming and an ethos centred on quality and sustainability.
‘Legend in the industry’
“Jim is a legend within our industry and we are proud to maintain the traditions and name he created as we continue to serve our UK customers and farmer suppliers.”
The 2017 deal between Dawn Meats and Dunbia also saw Dawn acquire Dunbia’s Republic of Ireland operations, resulting in a total of 10 Dawn Meats facilities. The joint venture was agreed to increase the processors’ market presence and improve service to customers in manufacturing, retail, wholesale and foodservice.
Dobson added: “The creation of the joint venture with Dawn Meats ensured the business would continue to grow as a leading quality meat supplier in the UK market.
Building on past achievements
“I want to thank all the team that have worked on the integration, and feel confident that they are well-placed to build on all our past achievements together.”
Dawn Meat’s combined businesses in the UK and Ireland now process approximately 1m cattle and 3m sheep annually. The meat processor employs more than 7,000 staff and works with more than 30,000 farmer suppliers.
Meanwhile, Italian nut and dried fruit firm Besana, which supplies manufacturers and supermarkets including Tesco and Waitrose, will grow its Ipswich packing and distribution site following a merger with Spanish company Importaco.