AB Mauri and German business Böcker have signed an agreement to work together on development of ingredients for bread and fermented goods.

Described as experts in sourdough, Böcker uses a variety of grains to produce sourdough products, including starters for in-house fermentation; dried, liquid and paste sourdoughs; and gluten-free sourdoughs.

The businesses have worked together for eight years, and the new agreement – signed by AB Mauri managing director Andrew Pollard and Georg Böcker, the fourth generation of family-owned Böcker – formalises the collaboration between the two businesses.

“AB Mauri has spent in excess of eight years cultivating this relationship,” said Pollard. “We have worked initially from a glimmer of an idea to the close partnership we have today with Böcker.

“I am absolutely delighted that we have been able to reach this new agreement, which enables both parties to engage in a more intimate way, enabling the growth of this exciting product category not only in the UK and Ireland, but also in other geographic regions.”

Pollard added that, in conjunction with Böcker, AB Mauri has a core technology and application understanding, and also understands how the functional and technical benefits can tap the demands of consumers in the UK and Ireland.

AB Mauri NPD director Jim Hawkridge explained that the business had focused on using the technology to offer customers additional flavour, texture and other bread attributes, using sourdough-based cereal fermentation technology.

He added that malt technology provided through Holgran, which was acquired by AB Mauri from Rank Hovis last year, would add further value to the company’s ingredient offering.