Troubled Dutch retailer Royal Ahold today announced that a definitive agreement has been reached with NBTY, a US-based producer of dietary supplements, for the divestment of Ahold’s Dutch natural products retail unit De Tuinen for around €16m (US$18.6m) in cash.

De Tuinen has been part of Ahold's Dutch health and beauty care division since 1991 and consists of 41 owned stores and 25 franchise stores. De Tuinen sells a range of over-the-counter drugs, dietary supplements, gift items and natural beauty care products. De Tuinen has now been definitively transferred to Holland & Barrett Europe, a British subsidiary of NBTY.

The planned divestment of De Tuinen, announced on 11 December 2002, is part of Ahold's strategic plan to restructure its portfolio to focus on high-performing businesses and to concentrate on its mature and most stable markets.