8 October 1999

Spud supplier buys out rival

BRANSTON Potatoes has bought GA Bowskill (Lin Pack), a move which boosts its packhouse capacity by 30% and extends its lead as Tescos biggest supplier of fresh potatoes.

That could be crucial, as Tesco and other supermarkets prepare to take on the might of Walmart following its take-over of Asda. Talk that retailers will look to rationalise their supplier base is rife, admits Branstons managing director Graeme Beattie. "You have got to be pretty efficient to survive in an increasingly competitive market place," he says.

Branston and Bowskill also sell sizeable tonnages to Netto, the Co-op and wholesale markets.

Bowskill boasts a 40,000t/year capacity, and its site at Kirton Lindsey, Lincs has 7500t of storage, including a two-year-old 6000t environmentally controlled store. Branston Potatoes has 130,000t of capacity at its sites in Branston, Lincs and Ilminister, Somerset. &#42