Irish-based food and flavours company Kerry has announced the acquisition of four flavour businesses for €170m (US$201.5m), significantly expanding the group’s Mastertaste division’s flavour development and global customer service capabilities.

Kerry said the acquisition of New Jersey-based Manheimer, Los Angeles-based Flavurence, Mexico-based Laboratorios Krauss and Italy-based Fructamine represents a “further major step in broadening the group’s flavour technical base and in progressing Mastertaste’s regional development and business expansion programme”.

Total consideration for the four acquired businesses amounted to €170m. In the financial year 2003, the businesses had annual revenues of €110m and earnings before interest, taxation, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) of €15m.

“Demand for natural, more varied and complex flavours is growing in line with evolving consumer trends and increasing consumption of convenience foods, prepared meal solutions, health and nutraceutical food and beverages,” said Kerry’s CEO Hugh Friel.