Cranswick's share price hops higher with £40m acquisition of East Anglian poultry farm

Kasmira Jefford
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Cranswick made its first major poultry acquisition in 2014 with Benson Park (Source: Getty)

Pork producer Cranswick has announced it is fattening up its operations with the acquisition of a family-owned poultry business for £40m, sending shares up by more than six per cent this morning.

The FTSE 250-listed food producer, which supplies products ranging from sausages to pies to supermarkets such as Sainsbury's, said it has bought the entire issued share capital of CCL Holdings and its subsidiary Crown Chicken in cash from the Thacker family and management.

The East Anglian business breeds, rears and processes fresh chicken and also has a milling operation, which supplies feed to other pig and poultry producers in East Anglia. Last year, Crown generated £83.8m sales and adjusted earnings of £6.6m.

Cranswick chief executive Adam Couch said the deal will build on its first major foray into the poultry business in 2014, when it bought cooked poultry producer Benson Park.

"This acquisition represents important progress in our long term growth strategy of developing new product channels in both pork and other proteins," Couch said.

In a trading statement issued last week, Cranswick posted a 12 per cent rise in total full year sales volumes, boosted by strong export sales.