Essex malt business buys up Yorkshire competitor

barley grown to produce malt

barley grown to produce malt - Credit: Crisp Maltings

A subsidiary of Witham-based Bairds Malt has bought a Yorkshire competitor in an undisclosed-value deal.

Grain trader Saxon Agriculture, of Swaffham in Norfolk, said the acquisition of Campbell and Penty would open up new regions to the business.

Saxon grain director Mark Smith said: “Access to first-hand farm grain in Yorkshire and North East will allow us to now source cereals, oilseeds and pulses directly from growers across all the major English arable regions and thereby better serve our consumer customers.”

Campbell and Penty, which has traded since 1921, will retain its name but trade from a new office in Tadcaster, with all transactions secured by Bairds Malt, its UK parent business.

Saxon managing director Nigel Gossett said: “At a time of contraction and consolidation in the merchant sector we are confident that farmers and consumers will benefit from the presence of a new, secure trading partner in the region.”

Bairds Malt operates five malt plants in the UK, turned over £187.4m in 2017 and employs around 220 people. It is a division of Graincorp Australia.