Tyrrells - which has a presence in categories including potato chips, vegetable crisps, premium popcorn and organic crisps and snacks - exports to more than 37 countries. Australia is now the company’s second largest international market after France.
UK sales of Tyrrells crisps grew 17% year on year in 2015 [Nielsen], and the business expects brand value to reach £230m ($330m) this year.
The investment in Yarra Valley, which manufactures products including extruded snacks, vegetable chips and potato chips, will create 120 production jobs at the company’s site in Victoria. In addition to Tyrrells products, Yarra Valley will continue to produce its own snack lines following the investment.
Victoria’s state government said it had worked closely with Tyrrells to facilitate the investment, and will be providing the company with a grant to help drive job creation and economic growth.
“This investment will create 120 manufacturing jobs in Melbourne’s outer east and also support Victorian farmers, with the company sourcing high-quality raw ingredients from the local region,” said Victoria’s minister for industry and employment, Wade Noonan.
Tyrrells CEO David Milner said he was delighted to be investing in Australian manufacturing.
“Our hand-cooked crisps have been extremely well received in Australia, where consumers value well-made food with provenance,” he added. “From working with family farms through to sourcing the best tasting, natural ingredients, we’re delighted to be expanding in a market famous for its food manufacturing credentials.”
Aroma snacks acquisition
The Yarra Valley move comes six weeks after Tyrrells announced it was acquiring German organic chips business Aroma Snacks, which sells products under the Lisa’s Hand-Cooked Chips brand. The deal has given Tyrrells its fifth site, and a manufacturing platform in Germany as it looks to build its European business and increase its presence in the organic market.
Tyrrells was founded in 2002 by farmer and entrepreneur William Chase, who sold the business to a private equity firm in 2008 for around £30m ($42m). In April this year, Chase announced he was returning to the snacks industry with the launch of popcorn brand Willy Chase’s Fit Corn that is being manufactured in a facility on his farm in Herefordshire in the UK.