Competition watchdog warns of pastry price rises amid Jus-Rol and Cérélia merger
The competition watchdog has raised concerns that a merger between two bake-at-home dough producers could lead to higher prices of pastries.
The Competition and Market Authority’s (CMA) said it was concerned about a merger between Jus-Rol and Cérélia, with fears prices would rise while the quality of products could suffer.
After the deal, Paris-based Cérélia will produce and sell both Jus-Rol products and own brand products for some of the largest grocers in the UK.
The disappearance of Jus-Rol as an independent player was a cause for concern, the CMA warned.
Cérélia has been granted five working days to submit proposals to tackle the watchdog’s concerns.
“Millions of people across the UK regularly use bake-at-home dough products, whether to rustle up a mid-week pizza for dinner or to make breakfast pastries for their families on the weekend,” Sorcha O’Carroll, senior director of mergers said.
O’Carroll added: “Consumers should know they’re getting value for money and not overpaying for their grocery products, especially as the current cost-of-living crisis stretches people’s budget even further. That’s why we won’t hesitate to refer this investigation further if our concerns aren’t addressed.”
US food titan General Mills is eyeing a sale of its European dough businesses – including Knack & Back as well as Jus-Rol – to Cérélia, for an undisclosed price.