AFT Holdings has made changes to the way it structures its portfolio in food, setting up a new entity through which the US investment firm will focus its moves in the sector.
The investor has created All About Healthy Foods, which will hold the firm’s ownership of US plant-based foods maker Atlantic Natural Foods, as well as its investment in Australia-based Freedom Foods Group.
AFT will hold a stake of “up to” 90% in All About Healthy Foods, with the balance being held by private investors, including Nabil Salib, who will work for the business.
Asked why AFT had set up All About Healthy Foods, Douglas Hines, the investment firm’s general partner and primary owner, told just-food it wanted to ” to focus investment and support holdings of the segment into one group, including all ‘healthy’ sustainable food segments, including resource development, food creation and functional foods”.
AFT is to spend US$2m on upgrading Atlantic Natural Foods’ plant in Nashville in North Carolina and consolidating production at the facility. Atlantic Natural Foods manufactures and markets plant-based foods under the Loma Linda, Neat and Kaffree Roma brands. Neat joined the portfolio in 2015 after Atlantic Natural Foods acquired the business.
Meanwhile, last month, AFT finalised its venture with Freedom Foods Group – unveiled in March – to set up a venture between the two companies in North America.
Freedom Foods Group had had its own subsidiary in North America and, announcing the venture with AFT in March, said it wanted to “accelerate” its “sales and earnings base” in the country.
The venture will locally market products from the Freedom Foods Group portfolio. The companies will also develop “functional grains” and crops to be milled in North America and exported to Freedom Foods Group’s operations in Australia to be used in products manufactured there for global shipping.