THE manufacturer behind Seabrook crisps has reported a turnover of more than £40m as it reaps the benefits of a merger with the Bradford firm.

Snack and crisp manufacturer Calbee UK has filed its first consolidated accounts since it bought Seabrook in October 2018 and the subsequent merger of the two firms.

Calbee’s UK accounts to December 31, 2020 show a turnover of £43.7m with Earnings Before Tax Depreciation and Amortisation (EBITDA) of £5.8m.

Like-for-like comparisons to the previous year, ending December 31, 2019, of the consolidated Calbee and Seabrook businesses show a £2.9m rise in turnover and a £0.8m uplift in EBITDA.

It seems the continued popularity of the Bradford-based Seabrook firm among customers is boosting Calbee's results.

The rise in revenue was driven by increased demand for the Seabrook brand, which is growing faster than the overall category at +25.8% year-on-year (Total Crisps, Snacks, Nuts and Popcorn +11.3% year-on-year).

Bradford Telegraph and Argus:

As part of the strategic review, Calbee has invested £5m across its Duncombe Street, Bradford, and Deeside factories. This has added to the company’s manufacturing capabilities – opening up opportunities to diversify and innovate within the snacking category.

The investment in the two sites has also increased capacities to ensure Calbee can meet a rising demand.

It is the latest boost to then firm, which also saw Seabrook Crisps launch a four-week advertising campaign on ITV in May, capturing its brand new theme ‘Brilliant By The Bagful’.

It was the first time Seabrook has been featured in TV advertisements for nearly 15 years.

Daniel Woodwards, Group MD at Calbee UK, said: “The real credit for our performance goes to the team we have at Calbee UK.

It’s been an incredibly hard time for all food manufacturers but I am particularly proud of how the team here has pulled together and responded to the multiple challenges we have faced

“Our investment programme had three key simple aims – to increase the volumes our factories could produce, increase capabilities so that we can innovate within the snacking category and increase brand investment to create a rise in demand for our products.

“This has helped us deliver a significant uplift in Seabrook Crisps, with a return to TV advertising for the first time in almost 15 years and it’s enabled us to launch Harvest Snaps, a new plant-based brand that falls below the proposed government HFSS restrictions and can therefore still be merchandised in promotional display space when the new legislation comes into force next year.”

Seabrook is now the largest crinkle cut crisp brand in the market and the second largest multipack crisp brand with 50m packs sold in the last year.

It was announced last month that Seabrook is now worth £65m.

Calbee has extended the Seabrook brand proposition by launching ‘Loaded Fries’ - Cheese & Bacon and Chilli Heat and has collaborated with branded partners such as Lea & Perrins to produce Seabrook Worcestershire Sauce flavoured crisps.