The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has today decided that there are reasonable grounds to accept undertakings proposed by Müller UK & Ireland in relation to the proposed acquisition of Dairy Crest’s dairies operations.
Acceptance in principle by the CMA of proposed remedies now triggers their commencement of a process which includes a 15 day public consultation, with a final decision to be announced after a total of 40 working days.
To address CMA concerns and avoid referral to a Phase II assessment which would take approximately 6 months to complete, the company was given the opportunity to suggest acceptable remedies.
Müller has offered to undertake to toll process a nominated volume of fresh liquid milk for a nominated purchaser in the South West/Wales. This will allow the purchaser to compete for tenders in the South West, Wales, the South and the Midlands.
Should the acquisition be approved after this period, Müller would aim to complete the transaction by the end of the year at the latest.
Ronald Kers, Chief Executive of Müller Group said:
“We strongly believe that this transaction will unlock real benefits for customers, consumers and farmers. We are pleased that the CMA has responded promptly to our proposals which aim to fully address the concerns which they expressed and look forward to a positive outcome.”
Müller UK & Ireland
Müller UK & Ireland is wholly owned by the Müller Group. It has 19 sites nationwide and employs almost 6,000 people across two business units: Müller Dairy and Müller Wiseman Dairies.
Müller Dairy is the UK’s leading branded yogurt manufacturer, with major brands such as Müller Corner, Müllerlight and Müller Rice.
The business makes chilled desserts including Cadbury Bubbles of Joy, Pots of Joy, Layers of Joy and Twin-pot products, produced under license from Mondelez.
Müller Dairy also supplies the UK private label yogurt market from a state of the art yogurt facility in Telford, Shropshire.
Müller Wiseman Dairies is a leading fresh milk, cream and butter business with a network of dairies and depots servicing customers throughout the country.
The business recently commenced butter-making, opening a major facility in Shropshire with the capacity to produce up to 45,000 tonnes of salted, unsalted and lactic butter each year for the manufacturing, food service and retail sectors.
To make its range of dairy products, the Müller UK & Ireland buys milk from more than 1,200 British dairy farmers, all of whom are Red Tractor Farm Assured.
Müller Wiseman Milk Group Dairy members elect a representative farmer board which works with the business to discuss milk supply issues, including the Group’s commitment to maintain a competitive milk price and contractual position.