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Paine Schwartz-backed Meadow Foods acquires edible oils producer

The dairy and ingredient provider’s purchase of UK-headquartered Roil Foods follows its add-on of Fayrefield Liquids in August.

Meadow Foods, a Paine Schwartz Partners portfolio company, has acquired UK edible oils provider Roil Foods.

The transaction’s value was not disclosed. Paine Schwartz declined to comment.

Founded in 1995, Roil’s products include anhydrous milk fat, concentrated butter and butter ghee offered in sizes ranging from 500-gram cans to 1-ton containers used for export. The company’s customers include chocolate makers, bakeries and food manufacturers throughout the UK, Europe, Asia and the Americas.

Meadow Foods chief executive Mark Chantler said that the Roil Foods acquisition bolstered the company’s dairy ingredient offerings and its plans for growth, which he described as ambitious and organic.

“There are obvious operational synergies between the businesses and we’re excited by the opportunity to extend our range and reach into new markets and products lines,” he said.

Paine Schwartz purchased its 35 percent share in Meadow Foods in September 2016 using capital from its Paine & Partners Fund IV, which closed on $893 million in early 2015. At the time of the initial investment, founding partner and chief executive Dexter Paine said that the firm saw opportunity to expand production through acquisitions that could leverage Meadow Foods’ existing supply and customer networks.

In August, Meadow Foods acquired Fayrefield Liquids, a Cheshire, UK-based supplier of commodity dairy products to retailers and food service providers in the UK and Europe. Financial details of that transaction were not disclosed.

Meadow Foods chief operating officer Jack Hancock told Agri Investor that his company had long been familiar with Roil, whose canning facilities Meadow plans to use across its product line. Expanding packaging types will be a key focus for the company in the near future, he added.

Hancock said the acquisition will also provide a framework for Meadow’s efforts to increase its focus on a growing market for “bespoke dairy ingredients” provided to food manufacturers, especially chocolatiers.

The acquisition comes amid shifts in the regional dairy market following supply-altering 2015 changes in EU dairy regulation, he explained, as well as new research suggesting butter is less harmful to health than previously thought, supporting an increase in demand.