Greencore said it had diversified into alternative customer channels with the purchase of Taunton-based desserts group Ministry of Cake in December.

Ministry of Cake, formerly Maynard Scotts, supplies foodservice companies with frozen cakes, cheesecakes and pastries.

The company produces own-label under the Ministry of Cake brand with turnover of £16m. It was acquired in September 2005 in a management buyout lead by Chris Ormrod. He will continue to head the business.

Tony Hynes, chief executive of Greencore’s convenience foods division, said: "Ministry of Cake will significantly increase our presence in the important foodservice sector."