Saputo boosts specialty cheese offering with Woolwich Dairy acquisition

By Mark ASTLEY contact

- Last updated on GMT

The acquisition of Woolwich will see Saputo "increase it presence in the specialty cheese category in North America."
The acquisition of Woolwich will see Saputo "increase it presence in the specialty cheese category in North America."

Related tags: Milk

Saputo has moved to increase its presence in the North American specialty cheese category with the acquisition of goat's cheese producer, Woolwich Dairy. 

Quebec-based Saputo yesterday announced it had acquired Ontario-based Woolwich Dairy, the producer of Woolwich Dairy, Chevrai and Wholesome Goat brand cheeses, for CAD$80m (US$61m, €54.3m) cash. 

Woolwich Dairy, which boasts manufacturing operations in Quebec, Ontario and Wisconsin, and a distribution centre in Ontario, produces, distributes, markets and sells branded and private label goats' cheese in the US and Canada.

The company, which employs around 190 people, most recently reported revenue of CAD$70m (US$53.3m, €47.5m).

chevrai
Woolwich Dairy boasts a goats' cheese brand portfolio that includes Chevrai.

With a brand portfolio that includes Saputo, Alexi de Portneuf, DuVillage, Armstrong, and Bari, Saputo is Canada's largest producer of cheese.

In the US, meanwhile, it ranks among the country's top three manufacturers of cheese. 

In a statement, Saputo said its acquisition of Woolwich Dairy enables it "to increase it presence in the specialty cheese category in North America."

In March 2014, Saputo announced the closure of four North American facilities, including two US cheese plants.

Saputo outlined plans to close its Swiss cheese plant in New London, Wisconsin and its mozzarella facility in Hancock, Maryland under measures "aimed at improving its operational efficiency in North America."

Two plants in Alberta, Canada - a condensed and evaporated milk facility in Wetaskiwin and a powdered milk facility in Glenwood - were also earmarked for closure. 

The following month, Saputo moved to increase its presence in Atlantic Canada - a region made up of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Newfoundland, Labrador, and Prince Edward Island - with the acquisition of the fluid milk activities of Scotsburn Cooperative Services.

Related topics: Consolidation, Manufacturers, Cheese

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