The private equity owner of Burton's Foods is looking to move the UK biscuit maker into the healthy and indulgent ends of the market following the acquisition of cereal bar manufacturer Northumbrian Fine Foods.

Duke Street Capital decided to boost the presence of the Wagon Wheels maker in the faster-growing ends of the category following a strategic review of the business last year.

"Our recent manufacturing review identified the need to develop capability in this area," Burton's told just-food today. "Northumbrian Fine Foods' cereal bar products and capabilities represent a perfect strategic fit for Burton's."

Northumbrian Fine Foods, based in Gateshead, makes branded biscuits under licence including Traidcraft Geobars and Ainsley Harriott, as well as private-label cookies and cereal bars.

"Northumbrian Fine Foods enjoys licenses with excellent companies such as Traidcraft and we hope that the licensing partners will see real benefits in the Burton's partnership," Burton's said. "These are complementary to Burton's existing licensing partnerships."

Under the deal, struck for an undisclosed sum, Duke Street Capital will acquire the entire Northumbrian Fine Foods business, which employs 204 people.

Burton's said Duke Street Capital would review how best to integrate the Northumbrian Fine Foods business but that there could be "some restructuring" at management level.