Granarolo acquires Midland Food Group

By Jim Cornall

- Last updated on GMT

Granarolo is looking to expand in the UK chilled food market through the acquisition.
Granarolo is looking to expand in the UK chilled food market through the acquisition.

Related tags United kingdom

Through its UK-based subsidiary, Italian-owned agro-industrial company Granarolo has acquired Midland Food Group, a consolidated chilled, ambient and frozen foods distributor in the UK.

Midland Food Group has been operating on the British market for more than 40 years, mainly focusing on foodservice distribution with a growing retail presence.

The dairy sector of Midland's portfolio accounts for 30% of sales.

The acquisition of Midland puts the UK behind only Italy and France in terms of turnover for the Italian company, with the goal of reaching €100m ($123m) to replicate the performance of Granarolo France.

Granarolo's manufacturing facility in Saint Omer (in the north of France near the tunnel connecting France and UK) will play an increasingly strategic role as a result of the boost to distribution capacity in the UK, according to the company.

Gianpiero Calzolari, chairman of the Granarolo Group, said the acquisition allows the company to expand in the British chilled food market, which in 2016 recorded total sales of about €100bn ($123bn) and continues growing. 

Two logistics hubs

Granarolo UK has a current turnover of more than €22m ($27m) with the Made in Italy selection of products (fresh and aged cheeses, pasta and bakery products, balsamic vinegar).

“It will now be able to count on two logistics hubs with a structured, efficient distribution system,”​ Calzolari said.

“It will also have the opportunity to develop direct sales in the large and constantly expanding food services sector in the UK. Lastly, we are looking to expand the e-commerce channel already put in place by Midland."

The expected turnover of Midland Food Group is about £62m ($86.6m) and it has 244 employees plus a portfolio of products that it supplies from two sites: Willenhall (20 km from Birmingham) - where it also manufactures and packs a range of foods - and Basingstoke (80 km from London), a hub for distribution in the city and the south of the UK.

The group has a manufacturing arm producing pastry products, sandwich fillings and cooked meats, and an e-commerce portal, IDeli. Distribution across the UK is done though a company-owned fleet of 50 vehicles.

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