UK-based confectionery firms Bristows of Devon and R Crawford (Northern) Ltd. are being amalgamated into the Great British Confectionery Group.

Both businesses make traditional sweets and were bought out of administration last year by Paramount Retail Group led by Ravi and Sunny Sharma.

A statement announcing the new entity said the companies were combined for trading purposes, while their individual brand names will remain.

“Customers will be able to raise one purchase order for the Great British Confectionery Group and be sent single invoices for goods ordered across both companies,” according to the statement. 

Bristows of Devon makes bonbons, fudges and toffees under the Pollards and Tuckers brands. It is based in the Devonshire town of Crediton, reflecting its former name Crediton Confectionery.  

R Crawford (Northern), better known as Crawford & Tilley, manufactures traditional, artisan boiled sweets and is headquartered in Kettering, Northamptonshire, with another facility in Glossop, Derbyshire.  

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Nigel Moult, the commercial director for Bristows and Crawford & Tilley, said: “This is a very positive move and in line with the investment and innovation focus in the business. This step will allow us to be much more efficient and save our customers time, as well as opening up choice, with an increased number of new SKUs available to order with ease. We’re building our export business as well as national distribution within the UK and it’s important that we unify shared services so everyone has one point of contact.”

A spokesperson for The Great British Confectionery Group told just-food that the brands are stocked in Sainsbury’s, while the company also supplies own-label products to “several national retailers”.

In terms of exports, the firm currently supplies “several” European markets, Australia and the US, and is in discussions with potential customers in India, South Korea, China and the United Arab Emirates.