US food and agribusiness company Bunge has announced that its European operating arm, Bunge Europe, has signed a preliminary agreement to acquire Polish edible oil and margarine producer Kama Foods from bankruptcy receivership.

“This strategic acquisition is part of Bunge’s continued expansion in Eastern Europe,” said Jean-Louis Gourbin, CEO of Bunge Europe. “It will allow Bunge to build closer relationships with farmers and to better serve customers and consumers in Poland.”

Bunge said it would make the purchase through Polish limited liability firm EWICO, in which Bunge Europe owns a 50% stake.

Under the terms of the agreement, EWICO will purchase the assets of Kama Foods free and clear of all debts and liabilities for approximately PLN81m (US$20.6m). The transaction is expected to close by the end of June 2004. From 1 March until the transaction closes, EWICO will operate Kama Foods under a lease agreement.