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History


Kerry has enjoyed phenomenal success since commencing operations in 1972. Our history traces the evolution and growth of Kerry Group – from its modest beginnings in the south west of Ireland into a leading player in the global food industry.

Commencing from a green field site in Listowel, Co. Kerry, Ireland over 40 years ago, Kerry Group has realised sustained profitable growth with current annualised revenue of approximately €7.0 billion.

The dynamics of all food and beverage markets, lifestyle changes and the internationalisation of food tastes with a growing preference for convenience, variety and quality prepared foods or snack products, means the Group's worldwide businesses are well positioned for continued growth and development.

We are confident that Kerry Group can continue to grow and develop its global business while continuing to build its consumer foods offerings – in line with the Group’s Mission Statement.

1970s
1980s
1990s
2000s
2010s
2020s

1972

Establishment of North Kerry Milk Products in Listowel, Co. Kerry. Dedicated to the manufacture of dairy proteins for export to the U.S.

1974

Formation of Kerry Co-operative to grow integrated dairy processing business.

1978

Opening of new headquarters in Tralee, Co. Kerry.

1982

Diversification into the convenience meat business with the acquisition of Denny and Duffy’s in Ireland.

1984

Established U.S. office in John Hancock Tower in Chicago.

1986

Transition from Kerry Co-op to Kerry Group plc with the launch on the Dublin Stock Market.

1987

Kerry opened its first overseas food ingredients manufacturing plant in
Jackson, Wisconsin.

1988

Acquired Beatreme to become the No.1 speciality food ingredients company in the U.S., at a cost that equated to Kerry’s market capitalisation at the time.

1990

Listed on London Stock Exchange 19 April 1990.

1994

Invested in Latin America with the acquisition of a facility in Irapuato, Mexico.

Acquisition of DCA Food Industries Inc. brings international capability in coatings, bakery and fruit ingredients.

Acquisition of Mattessons Wall’s brings major UK household brands
into Kerry Foods.

1997

Acquired SDF Foods, Malaysia – Kerry’s first move into manufacturing in South East Asia.

1998

Further expanded in Europe with the acquisition of the food ingredients division of Dalgety (DFI) with manufacturing facilities located in the UK, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Hungary, Poland and Ireland. With it came dedicated flavour capability through the UK and Australian based Mastertaste flavour business. 

Extended presence in the Asia Pacific region with the acquisition of the ingredients business of Australian food group Burns Philp.

2001

Acquisition of Golden Vale brings the Cheestrings brand to Kerry Foods, which is now marketed in 8 European countries.

2003

Acquisition of the foodservice branded business Da Vinci Gourmet, a supplier of flavoured syrups for speciality coffee chains. 

2004

Global Functional Ingredients & Actives platform developed, through the acquisition of Quest; a leader in the innovation and application of bio‑ingredients and pharma ingredients.

Continued to build a flavour and beverage portfolio through the acquisition of Manheimer, Flavurence, Fructamine, Oregon Chai and Laboratorios Krauss.

2005

Acquisition of Noon Foods, UK, producers of authentic Asian ready meals for the UK market.

Announced the establishment of the first manufacturing plant in Hangzhou, China.

2008

Roll-out of 1 Kerry ‘go-to-market’ programme.

2009

Continued growth of Kerry Foods with acquisition of Breeo Foods.

Global Technology & Innovation Centre opened in Beloit, allowing customers to work side-by-side with Kerry’s research teams to develop unique and innovative products.

2011

Completed the acquisition of Cargill Flavor Systems, strengthening Kerry’s extracts and flavours capability.

2014

Opened R&D centre in Singapore to support innovation in the Asia Pacific, Middle East and Africa region.

Regional Development & Application Centres opened in Moscow, Dubai and Durban.

2015

Opening of the Global Technology & Innovation Centre in Naas, providing a focal point for scientific research, innovative processing technologies and market leading technology platforms.

Acquisition of Red Arrow, a leading provider of natural smoke flavours.

Expanded beverage systems capabilities with acquisition of Island Oasis, a leader in all-natural premium cocktail mixes.

Kerry Taste & Nutrition is born, delivering better taste, health and wellbeing globally.

2017

The acquisition of Ganeden, a producer of patented probiotics, significantly strengthens Kerry’s position in the nutritional actives market.

Acquired Taste Master and Tianning Flavours in Asia further expanding our taste foundational technology portfolio and footprint to meet local consumer preferences within the region.

2018

Opened our first manufacturing plant in Russia, producing ingredients for the meat processing and snacks market.

Extended our taste and clean label capabilities with the acquisition of Fleischmann’s Vinegar Company Inc., a USDA certified all-natural producer of specialty ingredients.

Acquisition of AATCO Food Industries LLC, a leading Oman headquartered provider of culinary sauces, providing a strategic platform for business development in the Middle East and Africa.

2019

Opened a new facility in Tumkur, India, which will serve our rapidly expanding South West Asia market. 

Further enhanced our leading authentic taste and clean label technology portfolio with the acquisitions of Southeastern Mills (SEM), Ariake U.S.A., Isoage Technologies, Biosecur Lab, Diana Food (Georgia, USA) and Pevesa Biotech.

Also completed the acquisition of ComeIn Food Systems – a Mexican producer of seasonings and marinades.

2020

Refreshed our brand identity and set out an ambitious new sustainability strategy to reflect our global leadership in sustainable nutrition.

Acquisition of Bio-K Plus International Inc., a leading biotechnology company with a number of probiotics in beverage and supplement applications in Canada.

Acquired Jining Nature Group in China and Tecnispice, S.A. in Guatemala, both of which are local leaders in savoury taste in their respective markets within APMEA and LATAM.