Lancashire-based brand Ann Forshaw’s and the associated Alston Dairy have been acquired by the James Hall Group of Companies for an undisclosed sum.
James Hall and Co is the primary wholesaler to Spar stores throughout the North of England.
The acquisition sees the group grow its food manufacturing business in the Northwest, adding Alston Dairy to its portfolio which already includes Clayton Park Bakery, Fazila Foods, Graham Eyes Butchers and the Great Northern Sandwich Company.
Ann Forshaw and Emma Coupe will remain as directors of the company, and all staff will continue in employment at Alston Dairy. The Forshaw family’s Bolton Fold Farm, situated next door, will remain under its ownership.
Dominic Hall, joint managing director of James Hall and Co, said: “We are delighted to complete the acquisition of Alston Dairy and the Ann Forshaw’s brand, which has an outstanding reputation for producing premium yogurt products”.
“We have sold Ann Forshaw’s products in our Spar stores for many years, and they have played an important role in our dairy categories, becoming firm customer favourites. We continue to strive to source locally as much as we can, and acquiring Alston Dairy will allow us to protect that ambition and keep the brand local.”
Forshaw said: “Across several decades, I have poured all of my energy and passion into growing the business, and with the support of a wonderful team, we have developed the brand and product range into what it is today”.
She continued: “However, I felt that the time was right for me to sell the business, and I was keen to ensure that Alston Dairy and the Ann Forshaw’s brand was sold on to a company that has shared values and is similarly family-owned, so I am very pleased to complete the deal with James Hall”.
Alston Dairy will continue purchasing the milk it uses in its yogurts from Bolton Fold Farm.
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2023
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