McCain acquires £41.5m stake in plant-based firm Strong Roots

By James Ridler

- Last updated on GMT

McCain has acquired a minority stake in Strong Roots for $55m
McCain has acquired a minority stake in Strong Roots for $55m

Related tags: plant-based, acquisition

Frozen potato processor McCain Foods has acquired a minority stake in Irish plant-based food firm Strong Roots in a deal worth $55m (£41.5m).

Strong Roots will leverage McCain’s global presence to expand its own footprint in existing markets – including the UK, Ireland and the US – as well as enter new markets worldwide.

The manufacturer, which produces a range of cauliflower hash browns, mixed root vegetable fries, bites and burgers, also sought to enter the foodservice market through McCain’s out-of-home network.

Plant-based portfolio

Commenting on the acquisition, McCain Foods president and chief executive Max Koeune said the partnership with Strong Roots would help grow its portfolio in a way meets changing demand in a sustainable way.

“We’re looking forward to working with Samuel and the Strong Roots team to help bring a healthy range into more homes across the world,”​ he added.

McCain’s stake in Strong Roots followed a series of investments by the manufacturer into sustainable and plant-based food firms. Examples included diary alternatives producer The Simple Root, plant-based chicken nugget alternative brand Simulate and indoor vertical farming company GoodLeaf Farms.

Sustainable focus

Howard Snape, regional president of McCain GB & Ireland, added: “As a family-run business, we take a long-term approach to everything we do, whether that’s focusing on making our products in a sustainable way to support the planet, or ensuring our food continues to meet constantly changing consumer needs.

“Strong Roots is a company that not only focuses strongly on sustainability but is also doing incredible work to grow the range of healthy frozen foods available when consumers are looking for it most.”

Goode Partners LLC, a New York-based consumer private equity fund that led the Series A investment in Strong Roots, has exited the board of Strong Roots and selling its shareholding.

Meanwhile, last month, Unilever agreed to sell its tea business​ – including iconic household name PG Tips – to CVC Capital Partners Fund VIII for €4.5bn (£3.79bn).

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