Big German investment to help Heather Mills' Corby-based vegan firm grow

The conglomerate will help VBites expand its production

Monday, 27th December 2021, 7:09 am
VBites, run by Ms Mills, supplies vegan products to companies including Dominos and Ocado.

A Corby-headquartered vegan food firm that has doubled its output in the past year has partnered with a large German conglomerate to help it upscale its food production.

VBites, run by businesswoman Heather Mills, has had an incredibly busy 2021 following a surge in the popularity of plant-based food.

Now, German food conglomerate Pfeifer & Langen Industrie and Handels KG, which is the parent company of Intersnack, will purchase a minority 25.1 per cent stake in VBites which will help it mass-scale its food production

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The firm says that the primary focus of the partnership will be to accelerate the growth of VBites' plant-based cheese and fish-free products.

It is expected that the investment will initially create about 320 jobs at the firm's Peterlee site - one of three factories it runs.

Heather Mills began a plant-based diet in 1993 when she was struggling to recover after losing her leg. Since then she has championed veganism and her firm has been at the forefront of vegan products as plant-based lifestyles have become more mainstream. She took on the Corby factory, formerly Redwood Wholefood, in 2000 and now the firm exports to more than 20 companies and supplies big household name companies with products.

Heather Mills said: "VBites' output has doubled in the last 12 months and with that growth set to continue we are very pleased to be working with a partner that specialises in large-scale food manufacturing."

New Food-managing director, Benjamin Rekab, said: "With Vbites' huge product range and Endoris' EU based manufacturing capabilities, the two companies will support each other in expanding their sales across borders in all plant-based categories allowing, for example, vegan, functional fish or cheese products from the VBites brand to be launched on the German market.

"With this partnership we follow a medium- and long-term strategic approach regarding our market presence in the internationally growing plant-based category. However, we also aim for short-term benefits on both sides that provide stimuli to both VBites and Endori in their daily operations."