Ipswich-based grain firm Nidera expands in north

Grain being loaded for export at Ipswich dock, operated by Nidera.

Grain being loaded for export at Ipswich dock, operated by Nidera. - Credit: Gregg Brown

A major grain, seed and fertiliser firm based at Ipswich is about to add a grain trading business in the north to its operations.

Ipswich Grain Terminal down at the town's docks.

Ipswich Grain Terminal down at the town's docks. - Credit: Archant

Nidera UK, which operates out of the Port of Ipswich, has reached agreement with the Liverpool-based food and agriculture company Edward Billington & Son Ltd to acquire the grain trading division of Criddle & Company.

Nidera UK chief executive Mark Dordery believes the agreement, effective from Tuesday, December 1, will offer “significant opportunities” for arable producers in the north and west of the country.

“The agreement brings the benefits of Nidera’s global grain trading strength and marketing insight to local growers as well as allowing them to access our expanding range of crop inputs and technical advice,” he said.

“It will also allow closer links between the region’s growers and industry consumers of combinable crops.”

Nidera UK has its main offices in Suffolk and runs the Ipswich Grain Terminal which now handles over a third of the UK’s total annual wheat exports. Last year over a million tonnes of grain passed through the port.

The company also has storage and processing facilities in York, owns the specialist seed business Grainseed Ltd and supplies seed and fertiliser to a growing number of arable producers throughout the UK.

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“Our intention is very much to invest in Criddle’s existing resources and their highly professional team, which is well established and respected throughout the local region,” said Mr Dordery.

“As well as acting as a foundation for developing services and products for local producers, the move complements our ongoing strategy of expanding and diversifying our existing business and widening our geographic reach.”

Lloyd Whiteley, chairman of The Billington Group, said the two companies were a perfect fit.

“This agreement represents a very positive development for all stakeholders,” he said.

“With its growing presence throughout the arable supply chain, both nationally and internationally, Nidera is ideally placed to develop and grow this business, ensuring that it continues to go from strength to strength.

“Despite the change in ownership, the business will retain its status as preferred supplier of combinable crops to the compound feed business of The Billington Group.”

The business will continue to be led by Stewart Johnson, who believes the move will bring real benefits to existing and potential new customers.

“This is great news for our farming clients, who will have access to unrivalled market intelligence provided by Nidera’s global network and will enjoy the security that a major international agribusiness provides.

“Our people will continue to be based at their existing offices in Liverpool and Wem in Shropshire, which will give both farmers and consumers the continued benefit of local service.”

Worldwide, Nidera is active in 22 countries and employs nearly 4000 people supplying cereals, oilseeds and protein to the food, feed and bio-energy industries.