Salad producer LJ Betts acquired by nearby fruit business

Kent-based lettuce grower and cereals business Laurence J Betts has been acquired by the Regan family, owners of neighbouring fruit business Hugh Lowe Farms.

Laurence J Betts, trading as LJ Betts, has been growing lettuces since 1930 and supplies a range of wholesalers, processors and food service sector businesses.

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The Regan family grow strawberries, raspberries and blackberries alongside an arable enterprise and vineyard.

The two farming families are related and are pleased to be able to keep the business within the wider family.

Managing director Stephen Betts will step down from his position after 45 years, although he will remain in a consultancy role.

Mr Betts said: “It has been an honour following in the footsteps of my father, Stewart, and my grandfather, Laurence, to build on their foundations, centred on growing top-quality produce while using good farming practice and treating staff and customers with respect.”

Incoming managing director Marion Regan said: “We are delighted to continue operating this superb fresh produce business, which we have known and admired for many years.

“Together with the excellent and skilled team at LJ Betts we aim to grow sustainably into the next generation, sharing the same values that have stood the test of time at Hugh Lowe Farms.”

Philip Betts will be replaced as chairman by Jon Regan, who is also chairman at Hugh Lowe Farms, while Nick Ottewell will continue in his role as commercial director.

Mr Regan said there were many synergies between growing fruit and berries at Hugh Lowe Farms and LJ Betts’ salad business.

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