Vegan Food Group to acquire tofu manufacturer in move that 'fast-tracks growth'

By William Dodds

- Last updated on GMT

The firm has its eyes on becoming a 'vegan Unilever'. Credit: Vegan Food Group
The firm has its eyes on becoming a 'vegan Unilever'. Credit: Vegan Food Group

Related tags plant-based

The Vegan Food Group (VFG) is set to acquire plant-based manufacturer TOFUTOWN, the firm’s chief mission officer Matthew Glover has confirmed.

In a post on LinkedIn, Glover said that the move would make VFG “one of Europe’s largest plant-based manufacturers​” and put group revenues of more than €100m in sight.

Established more than 40 years ago by Bernd Drosihn, TOFUTOWN is a supplier of organic tofu, spreads and meat alternatives across the EU that boasts revenues of €60m.

Listed with retailers including Aldi and Lidl, it employs more than 300 members of staff and operates three production sites, including one of the largest plant-based factories in Europe which is based in Lower Saxony.

VFC Foods rebranded as The Vegan Food Group Ltd last month (January 2024)​, in a move that followed its acquisitions of Meatless Farm and Clive’s Purely Plants in 2023.

VFG now boasts a range of 80 SKUs in the UK and EU across 21,000 distribution points, and has a stated desire to pursue further acquisitions as part of its mission to become “vegan Unilever​”.

Commenting on the move, the group’s chief executive Dave Sparrow said: “VFG will now be a major player in plant-based food, with a significant manufacturing scale across three sites, employing over 300 staff, and with a strong network of strategic manufacturing and supply chain partners.

“This acquisition allows VFG to fast-track our growth across the UK and the EU in chilled, frozen, and ambient products, in both branded and own label retail, as well as foodservice.”

Meanwhile, TOFUTOWN CEO Markus Kerres described the decision to join VFG as an “exciting opportunity​” that would allow the firm to pursue its founder’s vision.

"With Germany and the UK being the two biggest markets for plant-based foods, we’re well-positioned to thrive over the next decade,” ​added Kerres.

Finally, Glover noted: "Consolidation is required in the plant-based space, and with early signs of a rebound, the Vegan Food Group is well positioned to capitalise on market conditions and supercharge growth in the UK and Europe.”

In other news, Food Manufacture speaks to Kate Clawson, head of operations at Sleaford Quality Foods and winner of Factory Manager of the Year at the 2024 Food Manufacture Excellence Awards, about her passion for the food sector and the motivations behind her success.

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