Bakery ingredients suppliers Holgran and Fleming Howden, parts of the Rank Hovis Milling business, are to be acquired by AB Mauri.

AB Mauri, which supplies a wide range of bakery ingredients and yeasts, said the agreed acquisition would enable it to develop its existing technical capabilities and extend its offering with new and complementary products.

Based in Gainsborough, Holgran was founded in 1982, and has focused on consumer demand for healthier breads. The company, which became part of Rank Hovis Milling in 2008, said it had contributed to the growth of healthy bread categories such as seeded, high fibre, wholegrain and multigrain.

Fleming Howden supplies ambient and chilled bakery premixes and bakery ingredients.

Hovis said the deal was part of its strategy to focus on its baking and milling business, adding that it had been looking to drive sustainable growth across the whole group following the creation of Hovis Ltd in 2014, when Hovis was split from Premier Foods.

A Hovis spokesperson said: "I am confident that Holgran and Fleming Howden will benefit from being part of a more focused bakery ingredients business such as AB Mauri.”

AB Mauri described Holgran as a well-established business with a strong reputation, solid market position and highly capable workforce.

“The integration of the business will broaden ABM’s market opportunities and supports the company’s existing growth strategy,” added AB Mauri, which is a division of Associated British Foods.

The deal is expected to complete in the coming months.