The European Commission has cleared the proposed acquisition by Danish Crown of the UK’s Flagship Foods.

The deal will increase Danish Crown’s presence in the United Kingdom where it will continue to face sufficient competition, the Commission said.

Danish Crown is the largest Danish cooperative slaughterhouse and has in total 20,525 farmer members who supply live animals to the cooperative. It is active in the slaughter of pigs and cattle, meat trading and meat processing.

Flagship Foods is a private company based in the UK whose subsidiaries include: Dalehead Foods, which is active in the slaughtering of pigs in the UK, in the supply of meat for direct human consumption as well as for further processing, and also has interests in the breeding and finishing of live pigs; Flagship Fresh Meats, which produces fresh meat products for direct human consumption and meat for further processing in the UK; and Roach Foods, which produces a wide range of processed meat products in the UK.

The Commission found that the main effects of the proposed transaction would be in the market for fresh pork for processing as well as in the market for processed pork products. This latter market would include the sale of raw cured pork (bacon and raw sausages) and processed pork for cold consumption.

However, the Commission’s investigation showed that although the transaction would give Danish Crown an important position in some of these markets within the UK, the new entity would continue to face strong competition from other players in these markets such as Grampian, Kerry Foods and Cranswick.