Diamonds acquisition of Pringles has been delayed following a probe into payments

Diamond's acquisition of Pringles has been delayed following a probe into payments

Diamond Foods' acquisition of the Pringles business from Procter & Gamble has been delayed over an investigation into the US snack firm's crop payments to walnut growers.

The deal, which was initially struck in April, was set to close next month. However, Diamond said yesterday (1 November) that the sale is now likely to be completed in the first half of 2012.

The company, which makes Kettle crisps and Emerald nuts, said the chairman of its audit committee had received an "external communication" the firm's "accounting for certain crop payments to walnut growers".

Diamond said: "In response to the communication, Diamond's audit committee decided to perform an investigation of this matter. Management is fully committed to supporting the audit committee in this process."

Procter & Gamble said it remained "committed" to the deal but added: "The company believes it is important this matter be fully understood and resolved before proceeding."

Shares in Diamond closed down 2.48% at $64.12. Procter & Gamble's shares finished the day 2% lower at $62.71.