Savencia Fromage & Dairy, the France-based cheese major, has acquired Hope Foods, a US supplier of plant-based dips and spreads.

Financial terms were not disclosed. Savencia, ranked 14th in Rabobank’s recently-released list of the world’s largest dairy companies, said the addition of Hope Foods would benefit its business.

“Our core business remains cheese and dairy products but we want to develop new offers in the plant-based category with taste differentiation and premium brands. Hope is a strategic fit for us to drive growth in premium natural food products,” Savencia CEO Jean-Paul Torris said. “Hope enlarges our brands’ portfolio in the USA into fast-growing, better-for-you products and provides an excellent opportunity to expand consumer options for great-tasting, plant-based products.”

Colorado-based Hope Foods markets products such as cashew-and-almond dips and black-garlic houmous.

Robbie Rech, one of Hope Foods’ founders, said the company was “thrilled” to be “partnering this great brand with a company like Savencia”. The French group is, he added, “known throughout the world for some of the best-tasting products on the market. We believe this partnership represents a terrific opportunity to realise Hope’s potential for leadership within the plant-based products space”.

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Last month, Savencia filed its financial results for the first half of 2021. The company’s net sales grew 11% to EUR2.67bn (US$3.08bn), or by 9.4% on an organic basis.

Sales of cheese products rose 7.2% organically, as out-of-home volumes recovered and the company saw “strong” retail sales.

Net sales from Savencia’s “other dairy products” division increased by 12.9%, again helped by foodservice and by higher sales for industrial products.

Savencia’s operating profit stood at EUR117m, versus EUR61m a year earlier. Group net income was EUR67m, compared to EUR27m.