In this exclusive video interview, we talk with Griffith Foods president Wim van Roekel and Flavourworks managing director Chris Ormrod to discuss the rationale behind the acquisition and what the future holds for the two businesses.
“It was one of those serendipitous moments where two problems come together with one solution,” explained Ormrod. “Griffith Foods approached me seven months ago to look into whether we could pick up some sauce manufacturing, a particular area where they had capacity issues.
Partnership to acquisition
“At the time, I was also having similar issues and I had been looking long and hard into investing in some new kit and invest in some upgrades. The conversation with Griffith quickly turned from ‘can you do this for us’ to ‘do you want to become part of the Griffith family’.”
Commenting on the deal, Wim van Roekel added: “We have long admired the Flavourworks strong customer focus and its product range allows us to develop our wider offering and accelerate our European growth plans.”
Ormrod and Roekel also discussed the impact of the past 18 months have had on their businesses, from the fallout of Brexit to the spread of COVID-19.
‘Not past Brexit’
“We are not past Brexit, not by a long way,” said Ormrod. “For every piece of flavoured butter I send [to Northern Ireland] I have to fill in 123 different forms, provided I can get the vet to come and sign them and I can get the loads taken. The Northern Ireland Protocol as it currently stands is unsustainable and impractical.
“The ‘pingdemic’ and the frustrations around trying to work out if you’re a food manufacturer that can or cannot ask for their staff to be exempted, that’s beyond a farce – I have no idea who’s on the list and I’m getting frustrated. The Government have to understand that its an almost impossible set of manacles for us to work under.”
Meanwhile, Kerry Group has acquired biotechnology company Biosearch Life as part of its continued to focus on its nutrition and ingredients business.