Belgium-based Pinguin has bought Christian Salvesen Foods, the UK’s largest processor of frozen green vegetables, in a deal worth GBP17.2m (US$34.2m).

Pinguin, one of Europe’s leading vegetable processors, announced the deal this morning (20 August).

The Salvesen business consists of vegetable processing, packing and storage at three sites in Lincolnshire. Pinguin said Salvesen would retain the land and buildings at the sites, with the Belgian group leasing the assets from the UK company.

Salvesen will hang onto its sites at Grimsby, Hull and Lowestoft, which provide contract processing and storage services.

Pinguin CEO Herwig Dejonghe said the company would work “closely with management to develop the long-term growth prospects” of the Salvesen business.

Pinguin already owns two sites in the UK and has recently faced criticism for plans to cut jobs at one of the facilities, which is based in Boston.

Salvesen has interests in a number of sectors, including aviation logistics and building products. Chief executive Stewart Oades said the frozen vegetables business would have “greater opportunities as a part of Pinguin, whose strategy is focussed on frozen vegetables”.

Oades added: “This disposal marks another important step in our strategy of refocusing around our core activities of logistics and transport.”