Up to 50 jobs will be created through a multi-million pound expansion of a Bradford food importer and distribution business which is set to double the size of its premises with a new purpose-built base.

P&B Foods Ltd, which distributes a wide range of food products across the UK and Europe, will invest around £5 million on its expansion.

In a deal supported by Bradford Council, the company has bought a 12.72 acre site at the Prologis business park next to the M606 motorway where it will develop a new base to replace its current 150,000 sq ft premises on Planetrees Road, Bowling.

The site is near the giant Marks & Spencer Northern distribution hub The new 230,000 sq ft distribution centre will also provide space for future expansion by the £42 million turnover company, which is looking to create the new jobs over the next five years.

P&B Foods, a family-run business which began in 1967, is now the UK’s leading importer and distributor of Asian and oriental foodstuffs, supplying products such as rice, spice, lentils, flour, chutneys and pickle products from around the world.

Customers include Bradford-based Morrisons along with Tesco and a range of other retailers, wholesalers, hotels and restaurants. Its current base handles 200 tonnes of products a day, including six container loads.

Mohinder Singh Bhatoa, P&B Foods managing director, said the expansion had been driven by continued growing demand and the firm had been looking to a suitable site to develop for at least two years.

He said: “The move to Prologis Park Bradford is an important step forward for our business and achieves our twin objectives of remaining in Bradford and being close to the motorway network.

“This is a high-profile site in a perfect location.

“We will have immediate access to the M606, at the centre of the M62 trans-Pennine corridor, which means that we are in an ideal position to offer the best possible service to our customers.”

Andrew Griffiths, Prologis UK managing director, said selling the land to P&B Foods was a significant step for the Bradford site where in 2010 Marks & Spencer, in a joint venture partnership with Prologis and supported by Bradford Council, developed a 1.1 million sq ft distribution centre. He said: “We are pleased to offer P&B Foods a suitable plot for its new facility.

“Prologis Park Bradford is an award-winning development and we are delighted that the site has attracted a local occupier.”

Bradford Council leader Coun David Green, said: “This is fantastic news for the Bradford economy as it will enable this leading food importer and distributor to expand and generate more jobs in the area.

“It is good to see a local company develop and prosper and it proves there is a growing confidence in this area.”