2 Sisters Food Group has put its bakery businesses Holland’s Pies and Portumna on the market, which, if sold, would be the latest disposals by the UK poultry major.

“We are currently progressing a sales process for our Holland’s Pies and Portumna pastry businesses with an interested party. We will be able to update fully once we have an outcome of the transaction process,” a spokesperson said in a brief statement provided to Just Food.

The planned divestments add to other food assets let go in recent years, while 2 Sisters’ presence in poultry has been built up.

Owned by businessman Ranjit Singh Boparan, 2 Sisters had expanded its food portfolio through the 2011 acquisition of Northern Foods. That transaction was conducted by sister company, led by Ranjit Singh as president, Boparan Holdings, which revealed a plan in a July 2020 trading update to “implement its strategy by further simplifying its structure, aiming at ultimately becoming a poultry-focused business”.

A deal instigated in 2021 for Banham Poultry was cleared this year by the UK’s competition body. Ranjit Singh’s private investment vehicle – Boparan Private Office (BPO) – conducted the purchase of the chicken supplier, based in Norfolk, eastern England. In 2017, BPO also acquired Norfolk-based Turkey supplier Bernard Matthews. 2 Sisters itself is a major private-label chicken supplier to UK supermarkets.

Holland’s Pies becomes the last business to go under the Northern Foods purchase. Fox’s biscuits, Goodfella’s pizza assets, Matthew Walker Christmas puddings and seafood supplier Donegal Catch have all gone, as have the red-meat operations and the Manton Wood sandwich business.

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2 Sisters bakery division, in which Holland’s Pies and Portumna are both part, includes pies and puddings. Holland’s Pies – based in the north-west county of Lancashire –supplies retail, fish and chip shops and sports venues and employs 500 staff in the UK and Ireland, according to 2 Sisters’ website.

Portumna of County Galway, Ireland, produces pies as well but also supplies other savoury pastry items, such as sausage rolls and quiches to the retail and foodservice channels.

Other than private-label poultry and the Buxted chicken brand, 2 Sisters will be left with its so-called Meal Solutions division once the bakery assets have gone. The unit includes Cavaghan & Gray, Grimsby Soups and Sauces, Gunstones, RF Brookes and The Pizza Factory supplying retail, according to the website.

In 2 Sisters’ latest accounts filed in July with London-based Companies House, the group made an after-tax loss of GBP74.9m (US$91.8m) in the 12 months to 31 July 2021, compared to a GBP25.9m loss a year earlier. The company said it incurred GBP12.8m in exceptional costs.

Turnover was up 10.3% at GBP1.4bn.

In November last year, Ranjit Singh was said to be seeking to raise GBP50m from hedge funds for Boparan Holdings. A spokesperson at the time told Just Food the company had “nothing to add” to the report carried by Sky News.