Last updated: August 13, 2014
August 12, 2014
Guardian article – UK food watchdog admits chicken factory breached hygiene laws
Our response to the above article of August 12/13 2014:
We welcomed the recent FSA independent audit at two of our sites, which found no legal compliance issues. Both customers and our own internal investigations supported the FSA’s findings.
A detailed rebuttal statement can be read by clicking here.
However, we are not complacent and we will carry on with our own continual improvement programme, taking on board learnings, investing in our colleagues, our factories and our product development. We will also lead on hygiene and continue with our industry-leading campylobacter trials to tackle this issue once and for all.
We are determined to lead the poultry sector with best practice and compliance, and are always looking to improve standards across our operation.
July 28, 2014
2 Sisters Food Group welcome FSA inspection findings
2 Sisters Food Group can today announce the outcome of the recent Food Standards Agency (FSA) audits at two of its chicken processing sites.
Both sites – at Scunthorpe and Llangefni – have passed the rigorous audit processes which were carried out on July 25th. Scunthorpe has been rated as “Good” and Llangefni as “Generally satisfactory”.
The audit follows unfounded allegations in the national media about alleged hygiene issues at both sites. 2 Sisters has consistently denied these allegations as untrue, misleading and inaccurate.
The FSA has recently introduced a new, more thorough audit process – with four rating outcomes – Good; Generally Satisfactory; Improvement necessary and Urgent Improvement necessary.
The UK has one of the most stringent food safety regimes in the world. 2 Sisters – like all food processers – is regularly audited by the FSA, Defra and the British Retail Consortium. This is in addition to regular unannounced customer audits and internal audits.
Ranjit Singh, CEO of 2 Sisters Food Group, said: “We welcomed these audits and we are pleased the FSA has worked with typical rigor and thoroughness. We are satisfied with their findings which show that no legislative compliance issues were raised.”
“However, we must not be complacent. We operate our business in an environment of continual improvement and we will be carrying on with that to ensure we produce first-class British products for all of our customers.
“We will continue to be at the forefront of our sector by investing in our sites and leading from the front in tackling key challenges to our industry like campylobacter.”
In November 2013, 2 Sisters launched the UK’s biggest ever independent study into campylobacter, costing £6m and collecting data from 124m birds. This study has been praised as sector-leading by the FSA and our interim report will be published next year.
In separate findings, the FSA has also released its latest quarterly figures for the UK poultry industry, providing a measure of our campylobacter rates at the point of sale. 2Sisters’ industry-leading position is maintained as chickens at all processing sites in the UK ran at 15.4% - a 3% improvement on the last quarterly data.
This progress is ahead of the next stages of 2 Sisters’ campylobacter trials – which includes both farm and factory interventions designed to reduce rates even further.
July 24, 2014
2 SISTERS - OUR ROLE IN UK POULTY
We stated in our announcement yesterday that our heritage is steeped in the poultry sector and we are extremely proud of this heritage and our excellent track record as a poultry processor.
In light of yesterday’s Guardian investigation, we understand the concern consumers may have when confronted with images and information without being aware of the fuller picture, or indeed without knowledge of the great work our colleagues are doing each day.
We are outlining today the measures we are taking to ensure we remain as a trusted partner of our customers and the end consumer.
In short, we are doing more than any other business in addressing the key issues our sector is facing and we are leading the way in establishing and enforcing industry best practice:
- TACKLING CAMPYLOBACTER - We are fully aware that campylobacter food poisoning is an issue for the whole poultry industry and one which needs to be tackled. We remain at the forefront of industry initiatives designed at reducing the number of cases. In November 2013, we launched the UK’s biggest ever independent study into campylobacter, costing £6m and collecting data from 124m birds. This study has been praised as sector-leading by the FSA. Campylobacter is a recognised industry-wide problem. It is not specific to us but we are taking the lead in tackling it. A recent FSA retail pilot study showed that Scunthorpe had far surpassed the FSA’s 2013 target for contamination. NB: It is worth noting again that even where campylobacter is present, it is killed during thorough cooking of poultry products.
- WORKING WITH OUR CUSTOMERS – We are working closely with our customers to ensure we maintain the highest food safety and hygiene standards. Our customers regularly make announced and unannounced visits, but we are working with them to reassure them that our processes and procedures are best in class
- COMMITMENT TO TRAINING – Our factories operates a robust training and induction plan that is delivered to both permanent and agency staff prior to starting work. All colleagues are trained in accordance with all specific policies and procedures. As part of the induction process all participants are subject to a Food Safety Test and anyone who fails to meet the requirements is spoken to individually, informed that they failed to meet the necessary requirements and, as such, any offer of employment is withdrawn. On-going training and refresher courses are available to colleagues and team leaders
- RE-INFORCING HYGIENE EXCELLENCE - Our colleagues are rightly proud of the work they do and perceived breaches of hygiene standards can of course dent this pride. That’s why we have launched a proactive campaign this week at our sites to reinforce the messages around the importance of hygiene, which consist of team briefings and a refreshed communications campaign
- STAKEHOLDER SUPPORT – The Food Standards Agency (FSA) and the British Poultry Council (BPC) have been fully supportive. The FSA has backed our approach at our factories and supported our campylobacter study.
July 23, 2014
Statement - response to serious allegations regarding 2 Sisters Food Group UK operations
Guardian article: “Revealed: The dirty secret of the UK’s poultry industry” published online on 23 July 2014 by Felicity Lawrence
The allegations about our processing sites at Scunthorpe and Llangefni made in the above article concerning our business and our management of campylobacter are untrue, misleading and inaccurate. There is no campylobacter contamination or problems at our sites, as confirmed by multiple independent external audits and our own rigorous testing.
We strongly deny and defend ourselves against these allegations. Our company’s heritage is steeped in the poultry sector. We are extremely proud of this heritage and our excellent track record as a poultry processor, and we will remain so. We are doing more than any other business in addressing the key issues our sector is facing and we are leading the way in establishing and enforcing industry best practice.
To date, we have only been given limited detail of the alleged evidence which The Guardian claims to possess. However, our detailed response answers as fully as we can at this stage the specific allegations made.
The company has an open policy to engage with key stakeholders such as local authorities, the media and Government bodies. We have also kept our customers fully informed as soon as we were contacted by The Guardian. We will be working to actively engage further with our stakeholders in the coming weeks in order to reassure them about our operations in the light of this inaccurate and misleading article.
Our detailed response can be found here.
July 18, 2014
Baroness Neville-Rolfe steps down as Non-Executive Director
2 Sisters Food Group announces that Baroness Lucy Neville-Rolfe has accepted a post as a Business Minister and, in accordance with the rules for such appointments, is stepping down as a Non-Executive Director of 2 Sisters Food Group with immediate effect.
Lord Allen of Kensington, Chairman of 2 Sisters Food Group, said: "On behalf of the board, I would like to thank Lucy for the contribution she has made to the board. Her good judgement, commercial skills and wise counsel has been much appreciated."
Lucy Neville-Rolfe said: “I am sorry to be leaving this growing and vibrant company. I have very much enjoyed contributing to its development and wish the company and its staff all the very best for the future.”
Baroness Neville-Rolfe joined the Board at 2 Sisters in September 2013. She served on the Board of Tesco PLC as Executive Director of Corporate & Legal Affairs from 2006 until January 2013.
Prior to her distinguished 15-year career at Tesco, she served as Director of the Deregulation Unit, BIS (then DTI) and Cabinet Office from 1995 to 1997 and was a Member of Prime Minister John Major’s Policy Unit from 1992 to 1994. She was a Member of the Senior Civil Service and also served in DEFRA (then MAFF).
June 19, 2014
2 SISTERS FOOD GROUP APPOINTS NEW GROUP CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER (CFO)
2 Sisters Food Group today announces it has appointed Stephen Leadbeater to the role of Group CFO, following incumbent Steve Henderson’s decision to take early retirement. He joins with immediate effect and is appointed to the Board.
Stephen has a wealth of experience in the food industry, including 10 years as CFO at Findus Group where he was instrumental in the successful delivery of a number of significant major financial and corporate projects. He also previously worked for Young’s Seafood and its precursor Ross Group. Other roles include working for divisions of United biscuits Plc and Associated British Foods Plc. He has major business transformation and financing experience and has had significant exposure in dealing with the City.
Ranjit Singh, CEO, said: “We are delighted to have Stephen on board. He has a great track record in the industry, has been successful in tackling some major transformational projects and I am sure he will carry on Steve Henderson’s good work.
“I would like to personally thank Steve for all of his hard work, commitment and dedication. We are sad that he has chosen to retire, but respect his decision and thank him for his constant diligence and pragmatism. We wish him a happy and healthy retirement – it is very much deserved.”
Steve Henderson has had a long and successful career with the company spanning 17 years with Northern Foods and further three years as Group CFO with 2 Sisters following its acquisition of Northern in 2011.
Steve will continue to work with both Stephen and the finance teams until this autumn to ensure a smooth transition and hand-over period.
April 07, 2014
New MD says Bakery investment is on the cards
2 Sisters Food Group has appointed Lochlain Feeley to the newly created role of Bakery MD.
Feeley’s arrival at 2 Sisters is the latest in a string of new senior appointments at the company, including innovation director, April Preston. It also follows capital investment announcements at a number of sites including Carlise and Cambuslang earlier this year
The position will see Feeley head up the company’s Bakery team based at Gunstones Bakery in Dronfield.
Feeley brings a wealth of experience, having enjoyed a 30 year career in food industry management. His most recent position was that of MD of Greencore’s Northampton food to go site.
Speaking about his new role and plans for the company’s Bakery business he was very clear on his reasons for choosing to join 2 Sisters:
“I’m delighted to join the company particularly at this point in time. To be successful, food companies need to deliver value for all their stakeholders: customers, employees, suppliers, owners and investors. For me this starts with organisational ambition and focus – a sense of purpose anchored in understanding customer needs. Then it’s about fully engaging people and creating excitement and passion for who we are and what we do. And then, importantly, delivering on our promises to stakeholders..
“We are in a very challenging sector, there’s no doubt about it but the opportunities are still there. What’s great about 2 Sisters is the scale of ambition and ability to adapt quickly and respond to change and opportunities. There’s a willingness to invest both in terms of capital and people wherever potential exists. 2 Sisters has already announced major investment at several sites this year and I expect that Bakery team will be taking advantage of this appetite for investment very soon, so watch this space!”
March 19, 2014
2 Sisters contract win brings jobs boost
2 Sisters Food Group has announced a multi-million pound expansion plan at its ready meals plant at Carlisle creating up to 90 new jobs, following a contract win with a major customer.
The food manufacturing giant’s Cavaghan & Gray factory has revealed details to equip a new 8,000sq ft production facility at its Riverbank site.
Investment in potato cooking and mash processing equipment, sauce cooking capability, two production lines and new chilled storage facilities are all planned.
The new development can accommodate up to 20% additional capacity at the existing site which will enable it to grow alongside customer demands.
The new facility, scheduled to be in operation by September, will be the hub for 25 additional product lines in the ‘Ready to Cook’ fish meal category. It will increase volume by an additional 10 million ready meals a year.
The new jobs created will range from production operatives through to skilled production, management, engineering and technical roles.
Cavaghan & Gray currently handles a number of product categories including potato based ready meals, vegetable accompaniments, fish cakes and crisp bakes, producing over 80 million meals every year.
William Duncanson, Carlisle Site Director, said: “This is fantastic news for the business and will secure a lot of new jobs for the area.
“This announcement further strengthens our strategic partnership with our customers and it also reflects the confidence held by them in the whole team here in Carlisle.
“We’ll now be focusing on the hard work ahead to get the new facility up-and-running and get the new lines in stores for later this year.”
Carlisle MP John Stevenson said: “This is tremendous news for Carlisle. It demonstrates confidence in our city from a major business and shows a commitment to Carlisle, which is very welcome."
February 3, 2014
April springs into action at 2 Sisters
Former head of food product development at Marks & Spencer April Preston has been appointed innovation director for 2 Sisters Food Group.
And Preston had a clear message just one month into the newly-created role – if food producers don’t innovate, they risk failure.
Preston, who managed new product ranges at Marks & Spencer, was talking just days into her new role at the food manufacturing giant, and pulled no punches in her assessment of the market.
She said: “The risk of not innovating is far greater than the risks associated with innovating. As the quote goes: ‘if you don't invent the future, someone else will!’
“I’m joining 2 Sisters at a very exciting time following a period of rapid growth and acquisition. In today’s highly competitive landscape and with significant market share across so many categories, innovation is the life blood of future growth and success. We must lead the way in developing distinctive points of difference and unique product propositions to set ourselves apart from competitors and appeal to both our customers and consumers.
“Our CEO, Ranjit Singh, is a natural and talented entrepreneur who is decisive and not afraid to take a risk. What better foundation can there be for creating and supporting an innovation based growth strategy. I’m confident and excited about the future for 2 Sisters.”
Preston’s arrival at 2 Sisters is the latest in a string of new senior appointments at the group as part of a restructure aimed at streamlining the group’s vastly expanded operations following the purchases of Northern Foods in 2011 and Vion UK’s red meat and poultry businesses earlier this year.
In August, 2 Sisters created two new chief operating officer roles, one for its protein division and one for chilled, ambient & frozen, both of whom will eventually report directly to CEO, Ranjit Singh.
January 13, 2014
2 Sisters expansion brings Scottish jobs boost
2 Sisters Food Group has underlined its commitment to Scotland by announcing a multi-million pound expansion plan at its chicken processing plant at Cambuslang near Glasgow, creating up to 180 new jobs.
The food manufacturing giant has revealed details to build a new 11,000sq ft extension to its plant, which will house two modern high volume ovens, spiral chillers and freezers, plus a general refurbishment of the current site.
The Cambuslang factory, based in Westburn Farm Road, handles ‘Added Value’ poultry lines for 2 Sisters – namely roasted and coated chicken products such as breaded and seasoned chicken.
The new extension can accommodate up to 50% additional capacity at the site which will enable it to grow alongside customer demands.
The key to the expansion was agreement with all employees at the plant to change shift patterns and move to a seven day a week, 24 hour operation. The new shift patterns start from mid-February.
Olivier Goudineau, Managing Director of the 2 Sisters Added Value poultry, said: “We’re delighted to have come to an agreement with the Unions and extended our working hours at the factory. This has unlocked the expansion plan and in turn means we can take on 180 additional colleagues.
“A lot of hard work has gone into realising this opportunity and it’s a great example of working together to achieve our aims. Our colleagues, the Unite union, the local regeneration team in Scotland plus MSP James Kelly have all been instrumental in making this happen.
“I hope this expansion signals the beginning further investment in the Scottish poultry industry.”
Rutherglen and Cambuslang MSP James Kelly said: “This is great news for the workforce at the Cambuslang plant who have fought hard to protect their livelihoods and will also be a welcome boost to the local economy.
“I welcome the creation of new jobs in my constituency and will work with all interested parties to bring investment and employment into the area. The Cambuslang plant is already one of the biggest employers in the area and I will continue to work alongside the 2 Sisters Food Group and others on this very exciting project for the local area.”
December 12, 2013
Top trio scoop Sainsbury’s farming honours
Three 2SFG farmers have been honoured at this year’s prestigious Sainsbury's annual farming conference.
The event, held at Stoneleigh Park, Warwickshire, celebrates the cream of the crop from Sainsbury’s agricultural base.
Andrew Gibson, Group Agriculture Manager for 2SFG, said: “The event was attended by over 750 farmers and growers. It’s an opportunity for all those supplying Sainsbury's to hear a business update from Sainsbury’s leadership team including CEO, Justin King.”
Part of the day involves distribution of innovation research and development grants across the supply base and honouring farmers who have gone the extra mile to grow and produce for Sainsbury’s.
This year three farmers who grow chickens for 2SFG walked away with major awards within the poultry sector:
- Simon Barton won Best Farmer for his work in low carbon reduction and sustainability.
- Chris Labdon won Most Improved Farmer for his work in low carbon reduction and sustainability.
- Nick & Clare Bragg walked away with the top award overall, when they were named Sainsbury's Farming Personality of the Year.
Andrew added: “All of these 2SFG growers are farming in the South West and supply 2SFG with chickens for Sainsbury's. They truly deserve their awards and we are proud to work with them.”
December 11, 2013
Rivals vote 2 Sisters as one of best-in-class
2 Sisters Food Group has been voted by its peer group as one of the most admired food companies in Britain.
Britain’s Most Admired Companies, published in the December edition of Management Today, has revealed that 2 Sisters is regarded as the 4th most admired food company operating today – the first time it has appeared on the list.
The list is compiled for Management Today by experts in corporate reputation at Birmingham City University. Each major business within its sector is polled on a number of criteria, including quality of management, financial soundness, quality of goods & services, ability to attract, develop and retain top talent, value as a long term investment, capacity to innovate, quality of marketing, community, and environmental responsibility and use of corporate assets.
2 Sisters was ranked 2nd on quality of goods and innovation, and came in third on quality of management, long-term value as investment and use of corporate assets.
2 Sisters rubbed shoulders at the top of the list with the more established global giants like Unilever and Associated British Foods.
Ranjit Singh, CEO of 2 Sisters Food Group, said: “This is a great achievement and means a lot especially because we are being measured by competitors.
“This business has come a long way in a relatively short period of time, so to be acknowledged by our rivals as an Admired Company is a fantastic achievement.
“It’s particularly gratifying to score so highly on product innovation and quality as these remain at the very heart of our business.
“We will continue to try to do the right things – produce top quality products for our customers and ensure we bring new and exciting dishes to Britain’s dinner tables.”
September 23, 2013
Pictured: Catherine Brown, CEO of the FSA; Ranjit Singh, CEO of 2 Sisters Food Group and Neil Khandke, Group Technical Director, 2 Sisters Food Group
Click thumbnails to enlarge
Lab opening puts food safety first for 2 Sisters
Food manufacturing giant 2 Sisters Food Group has officially a new £1m food safety laboratory, where almost one million food samples will be tested each year.
The laboratory – based at Nottingham’s BioCity Laurus site – was officially opened today (Monday September 23) by the CEO of the Food Standards Agency (FSA) Catherine Brown. The lab has created 20 new jobs, bolstering the workforce to 60 at the Pennyfoot Street site.
Up to 16,000 samples a week are tested at the facility, with samples coming from 2 Sisters food manufacturing sites all over the UK. A wide variety of products that are ready to eat and ready to cook are tested, ranging from biscuits, ready meals, pizzas to salads.
The samples are first logged into an automated laboratory information management system. From there, a number of tests are carried out by the team of microbiologists, dependent on the nature of the product.
Some samples will be placed in automated machinery for scanning for the relevant bacteria, while others will be placed in agar to see what grows.
Each product made by 2 Sisters has a microbiological specification and scientists at the BioCity labs make sure the samples match up. The specification is determined either by customer taste or even by law.
The results are placed back on the system to be read remotely by the originating factory.
Ranjit Singh, CEO of 2 Sisters Food Group, said: “I’m delighted Catherine Brown has joined us to open this new laboratory. This facility underlines our total commitment to producing world-class food products and ensuring that what we produce not only tastes great, but is safe to eat.
“We have invested a substantial sum in this lab, and as our business grows, there will be an increasing need to ensure quality and safety go hand-in-hand. It’s what the British consumer demands, and what we demand as a world-class manufacturer.”
Catherine Brown added: “It’s a great pleasure to open this new laboratory. Food safety is of paramount importance to any food business and I am very impressed by the energy and commitment 2 Sisters Food Group has shown by developing and building this state of the art facility.”
Neil Khandke, Group Technical Director, explained: “Food standards in the UK and Europe are extremely high. Our facilities are regularly inspected and reviewed by our customers and by our own teams here at BioCity and also by the authorities.
“Our sites operate to very high standards and the testing we do in BioCity is the final verification that all the things in place in our factories are actually working as they should be.
“The products tested here will be tested to verify that there are no problems with them. Obviously, it allows us if we see things, to take action should we need to and remove those products.”
The new labs, double the size of the previous lab, also in Nottingham, have created 20 new jobs and there is room to grow by taking on new microbiologists.
They are led by nationally respected food microbiologist, Fiona Brookes, who the company inherited from Northern Foods.
September 1, 2013
2 Sisters Food Group appoints Dame Lucy Neville-Rolfe as Non-Executive Director
2 Sisters Food Group is pleased to announce the appointment of Dame Lucy Neville-Rolfe DBE CMG as a Non-Executive Director, effective from today.
Dame Lucy brings a wealth of experience to this new position. She served on the Board of Tesco PLC as Executive Director of Corporate & Legal Affairs from 2006 until January this year.
Prior to her distinguished 15-year career at Tesco, she served as Director of the Deregulation Unit, BIS (then DTI) and Cabinet Office from 1995 to 1997 and was a Member of Prime Minister John Major’s Policy Unit from 1992 to 1994. She was a Member of the Senior Civil Service and also served in DEFRA (then MAFF).
Sir Charles Allen, Chairman of 2 Sisters Food Group, said: “I am delighted that Dame Lucy is joining us. She is without question one of Britain’s most respected and well known business women and it is a real coup for us to have her in the Board team.
“She brings unrivalled experience to 2 Sisters and her expertise and counsel will be invaluable as we look to continue to grow the business and realise our ambition of becoming one of the world’s best food companies.”
Dame Lucy said: “This is a great time to be joining the Board at 2 Sisters and I’m very excited at the prospect of working again in a sector I know very well.
“I am looking forward to working closely with Sir Charles Allen, CEO Ranjit Singh and the rest of the team as we continue to build the business and deliver on our strategic objectives.”
In 2012, Dame Lucy was made a dame in the Queen’s Birthday honours’ list.
In August this year, she was named as a Conservative life peer.
Dame Lucy joins current 2 Sisters Food Group non executives - Sir Charles Allen (Chairman); Andrew Cripps (Chairman, Audit Committee); David Gregory (Chairman, Safety & Governance Committee); Mark Hunter (Chairman, Renumeration Committee).
August 19, 2013
New structure announced at 2 Sisters Food Group
2 Sisters Food Group has today announced changes to its leadership structure.
Two new roles have been created that will report directly to CEO Ranjit Singh – Chief Operating Officer (COO), Protein and Chief Operating Officer (COO), Chilled, Ambient and Frozen.
Current Group Procurement & Supply Chain Director Chris Walker has been appointed to role of COO, Chilled, Ambient and Frozen.
Walker takes full responsibility for chilled, ready meals, biscuits, bakery and frozen trading divisions and will retain his current remit for procurement and supply chain.
Divisional Managing Directors Colin Smith (Biscuits); Eddie Power (Frozen); Simon Wookey (Chilled) and Veepul Patel (Bakery) will now report directly to Chris.
The business is currently recruiting for a COO, Protein – a role which encompasses all poultry, added value poultry and red meat operations in the UK and Holland.
Divisional Managing Directors Aart Voets (European Poultry), Steve Ellis (UK & 2 Sisters Poultry), Jose Peralta (Red Meat) and Olivier Goudineau (Added Value) will eventually report to the COO, Protein.
The new structure is effective from Monday August 19th 2013.
CEO Ranjit Singh said: “As our business grows, I am keen to ensure we have a team that is responsive to our customers’ needs and is shaped in a way that is fit for the future.
“Therefore, I am making these changes to the senior leadership team because it strengthens the business and puts the customer even closer to the heart of everything we do. These new roles will help give greater focus to our operational delivery and bring additional expertise within our product categories.
“This promotion for Chris is well deserved. He has had an outstanding 32-year career within retail, starting at Asda before working for almost 20 years at Morrisons. As Senior Trading Director for Fresh Foods at Morrisons, he was instrumental in developing their vertical integration manufacturing model.”
July 22, 2013
2 Sisters Food Group backs up new innovation & investment for the future of farming
One of Britain’s biggest food producers has today announced its full support of a new graduate scheme which is targeting new talent for the future of British agriculture.
2 Sisters Food Group is supporting today’s launch of the Government’s Agriculture-Technologies Strategy with its retail partner Sainsbury’s.
This first-of-its-kind agricultural graduate scheme is designed to shape innovation in British farming and engage young people.
A Sainsbury’s graduate is coming to work at 2 Sisters Food Group’s agriculture team later this year, gaining an insight into how the team works with farmers and retailers to deliver the right products for customers.
The graduate will focus on some key projects relating to product quality, impacted by the way the chickens are farmed.
Ranjit Singh, CEO of 2 Sisters Food Group, said: “Like our partner Sainsbury’s, we recognise the importance of attracting young people into our industry - and developing the talent of the future.
“I’m delighted to support this initiative and back our youngsters to ensure we have a healthy and productive agriculture sector in the future.”
Michelle Waterman, Group Agriculture Director at 2 Sisters Food Group, added: “We wholeheartedly agree with our retail partners that a big problem is the fact that the farming population is ageing, so it's important to have young people enter the industry and help to drive innovation and secure the future.
“With 2 Sisters backing this initiative, it brings benefits for the whole supply chain - from farmers through to our customer – the retailers – and the end consumer."
The unique scheme is closely aligned with the Government’s Agri-tech strategy by attracting the brightest young talent into the industry and creating the next generation of leaders to ensure British farming can lead on a global scale.
The graduates start in September and will spend six months at 2 Sisters as part of their two-year programme with Sainsbury’s.
Judith Batchelar, Director of Sainsbury’s Brand and co-chair of the Agri-Tech Leadership Group, said: “Farming is one of the biggest industries in the UK which is why we think it's so important to plan for the future now.
“This is the reason I'm extremely proud to launch a graduate scheme today that's dedicated to British agriculture and complements the long running schemes we already have in food technology, and product development. This is also a new way of working for industry, as for the first time we will running this scheme in collaboration with our end to end supply chain partners.”
July 17, 2013
2 Sisters Food Group signs licensing agreement with Premier Foods for Hovis Breakfast Biscuits
Agreement includes production, distribution, sales and marketing activity in UK & Ireland.
Two Sisters Food Group today announces that it has reached a licensing agreement with Premier Foods plc for the production, distribution, sales and marketing of its Hovis Breakfast Bakes range of breakfast biscuits.
The new agreement will run for an initial period of five years from 1 August 2013 and marks an important step for 2 Sisters Food Group as it looks to continually diversify and innovate within new food categories.
The £77.8 million breakfast biscuit¹ market represents the fastest growing segment of the healthier biscuits category, itself growing at 8% annually² . By combining the strong heritage and health credentials of the Hovis brand together with the biscuits expertise of Fox’s Biscuits, both companies foresee opportunities to target a genuine need among busy consumers to provide a healthier biscuit alternative and grow the category further.
Commenting on the new licensing agreement, Colin Smith, Managing Director, Fox’s Biscuits, said:
“I’m delighted with this agreement as it will enable both companies to be part of a relatively new and growing category. We see enormous potential to grow one of the nation’s favourite brands, which has such a strong association with natural ingredients and goodness, in the biscuits sector. We will look to create new varieties within the current Hovis Breakfast Bakes range as well as innovate with new products.”
Simon Devereux, Business Unit Director, Premier Foods’ Bread Division, said:
The three variants of Hovis Breakfast Bakes; Malted Crunch; Oats & Honey; and Milk & Oats; will be manufactured at the Fox’s Biscuits plant in Uttoxeter, Staffordshire. The licensing agreement also provides for other healthier biscuit options to be developed under the Hovis brand in the future.
“This licensing agreement is an excellent way for us to extend the Hovis brand into adjacent categories. By working with 2 Sisters Food Group and Fox’s Biscuits, we have a partner with the biscuits expertise necessary to take full advantage of the market opportunities.”
June 18, 2013
2 Sisters Food Group welcomes Office of Fair Trading decision on acquisition of Vion UK Poultry business
2 Sisters Food Group has today welcomed the decision by the UK’s Office of Fair Trading (OFT), which published its review into the acquisition of Vion’s UK Poultry business by 2 Sisters Food Group.
The OFT has fully reviewed the transaction, including the combination of the poultry businesses owned by both parties, and concluded that there is not a competition issue. The integration of both the red meat business and poultry business can now proceed.
2 Sisters welcomes the timely outcome of the OFT’s review, which now enables the Group to move forward with plans to invest and improve the Vion business, which remains loss making, and further develop the Red Meat (beef and lamb) business, which offers growth potential. The outcome also ends any uncertainty for our employees, for our customers and for farmers and other suppliers who serve these sites.
The deal is good news for UK consumers, who will now benefit from a secure supply of British meat and continued fierce competition amongst the supplier base, with both domestic manufacturers and imported chicken from a number of countries across the world.
March 4, 2013
2 Sisters Food Group agrees acquisition of VION’s UK poultry and red meat, securing a viable future for these businesses
2 Sisters Food Group today announces that it has agreed to acquire VION’s poultry and red meat processing businesses in the UK. The acquisition secures a viable future for these businesses, as well as providing certainty to their UK supply chain, which is underpinned by British farmers. The acquisition will help to meet growing demand from 2 Sisters’ poultry customers and further diversifies the company’s offering to include red meat, supporting 2 Sisters’ strategy of serving more meal occasions.
The acquisition follows the announcement by VION’s Dutch parent company on 19 November 2012 of its plan to exit its UK operations. VION’s poultry and red meat businesses are suppliers of poultry, beef and lamb to the retail and food service sectors in the UK and Europe. They have 11 processing sites in the UK and approximately 6,000 employees and have suffered from challenging trading conditions, in particular in poultry, with the loss of a number of major contracts.
Ranjit Singh, Chief Executive of 2 Sisters Food Group, said:
“We are delighted to be acquiring VION UK’s poultry and red meat businesses. They have faced significant uncertainty and tough trading in recent months, but today’s acquisition secures a viable future. With the majority of the operations being in Scotland and Wales, we are delighted that the Scottish and Welsh governments are supportive of this deal and we look forward to working with them and developing a sustainable future for these businesses.
This acquisition will safeguard a key supply chain for high quality British poultry and meat, offering reassurance to farmers in England, Scotland and Wales and upholding the quality and provenance that UK customers and consumers deserve.
At 2 Sisters, we put the customer at the heart of everything we do and in line with our customers’ strategies, these businesses will help us to shorten the supply chain for consumers and meet growing demand for British sourced food. Our immediate focus will be to improve performance, as we have successfully done with our previous acquisitions. We look forward to welcoming VION colleagues to 2 Sisters Food Group, and to working together to grow our business.”
Edwina Hart AM, Welsh Business Minister, said:
“I welcome today's announcement that 2 Sisters is to acquire VION’s poultry and red meat businesses, which safeguards the future of their operations in Wales. We have been working closely with both VION and 2 Sisters to help secure this deal in order to sustain the future for the workers and the supply chain in Wales.”
John Swinney MSP, Secretary for Finance, Employment and Sustainable Growth in the Scottish Government, said:
"I welcome the decision by the 2 Sisters Food Group to buy Vion. Today's announcement is a significant step forward and my officials and I look forward to working with 2 Sisters over the coming months in order to secure a sustainable future for the plants in Scotland. This is a time of significant opportunity in building the food sector in Scotland and the involvement of 2 Sisters assists that process.”
The sites acquired by 2 Sisters Food Group are:
VION UK Poultry:
VION UK Red Meat:
- St Merryn, Victoria
- St Merryn, Bodmin
- McIntosh Donald, Portlethen
January 18, 2013
Leading sandwich manufacturer set for 100 new jobs
Solway Foods, part of 2 Sisters Food Group, which is based at Manton Wood Enterprise Park, is set to recruit 100 new jobs in its factory, which supplies retail customers including Tesco and Costa.
The site employs around 1200 permanent staff. By winning additional business over the last 12 months, the site has seen production volumes increase by around 6%.
The site is a key part of 2 Sisters Food Group’s growth agenda. 2 Sisters, which employs around 18,000 people in the UK, Ireland and Europe, is one of the UK’s largest food manufacturers, supplying products including chicken and poultry, chilled ready meals, pizza, soup, sandwiches and salads; frozen pizza, fish and vegetables; puddings, cakes and desserts.
Steve Bryant, General Manager for Solway Foods at Manton Wood, said: “This is good news for Solway Foods and shows how under 2 Sisters we are focused on growing our business into the future.
“The food industry overall remains tough and highly competitive, but the chilled sandwiches market is showing continued growth and by putting our customers at the heart of everything we do, we have been able to benefit.”
Recruitment is already underway at the site, with jobs being phased in over the coming weeks. For more information contact firstname.lastname@example.org
October 11, 2012
2 Sisters Food Group scoops Outstanding Business Achievement award
The Chief Executive of 2 Sisters Food Group has scooped a prestigious industry award which recognises Outstanding Achievement in the food industry.
Ranjit Singh Boparan, scooped The Grocer Cup 2012 award, at a ceremony organised by the IGD (Institute for Grocery Distribution) in London. The food industry is the UK’s largest private sector employer and 2 Sisters is one of the leading manufacturers, supplying branded and own label products to the major supermarkets and other retail customers.
2 Sisters, which employs over 18,000 colleagues, operates from 42 sites in the UK, Ireland, India and Europe, supplying Poultry, Ready meals, Sandwiches, Salads, Pies, Pizza, Fish, Puddings, Cakes and Desserts, and Biscuits. Its brands include Fox’s Biscuits and Goodfella’s pizzas.
Joanne Denney-Finch, Chief Executive of the IGD, said: “Ranjit is a true entrepreneur and a credit to the food industry. He has been on our industry leaders’ forum, the Policy Issues Council, for the last year and continues to make valued contributions to our industry initiatives. I would like to extend my personal, warmest congratulations to him for winning the popular vote and receiving this award.”
Adam Leyland, editor of The Grocer, said: “Ranjit’s move to acquire Northern, and his vision to create the UK’s biggest supplier, was brave and bold; but with his relentless focus on customer service, he has won a lot of new business from retailers, and is starting to repay the City’s faith in his ability to deliver. He’s also shown a willingness to learn from Northern Foods, reversing some of his back office systems into theirs.”
Ranjit Singh, CEO of 2 Sisters Food Group, said: "It was really pleasing to see 2 Sisters recognised in this way and the award is dedicated to all of our colleagues and all of our customers.