RICHMOND, Va. — Universal Corporation announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Shank's Extracts, Inc., a privately-held, specialty ingredient, flavoring and food company with bottling and packaging capabilities. Following the close of the transaction, Shank's will operate as part of Universal's plant-based ingredients platform, which includes Silva International, Inc., and FruitSmart, Inc.
Founded in 1899, Shank's has established a presence within the flavoring, extracts and bottling marketplace, with significant vanilla expertise. In addition to pure vanilla extract products, Shank's offers a robust portfolio of more than 2,400 other extracts, distillates, natural flavors and colors for industrial and private label customers worldwide. Headquartered in Lancaster, Pa., Shank's employs more than 200 people and has a 191,000-square-foot manufacturing campus.
"This agreement with Shank's marks another important step forward in Universal's efforts to identify and execute on opportunities that broaden and enhance our plant-based ingredients platform," said George C. Freeman III, chairman, president and CEO of Universal Corporation. "The Shank's acquisition fits squarely in our new platform and our capital allocation strategy, bolstering our offerings for customers and expanding our value-added services by adding flavors, custom packaging and bottling and product development capabilities."
"As the domestic natural food flavors market continues to accelerate, we are pleased to be able to expand our customer proposition with Shank's portfolio of high-quality botanical extracts," said Freeman. "Shank's shares our commitment to food safety, as reflected in its continued investment in equipment, facilities and its highly trained and certified employees. We look forward to welcoming Shank's impressive team to Universal as we leverage our companies' combined 200-plus years of history to bring the business into a new phase of growth."
"Shank's has been providing high-quality products and services for more than 120 years, earning a reputation for consistency, traceability and dependability. This has allowed us to build a strong portfolio of long-tenured, blue-chip customers. As part of Universal Corporation, Shank's will benefit from the resources and scale of a global organization as we look to expand our offerings and enter new, lucrative end markets," said Jeffrey Lehman, president and owner of Shank's.
Shank's integrated manufacturing operations allow it to produce, package and deliver its final product consistently and dependably, in customers' preferred packaging. Boasting decades-long working relationships with its sourcing partners, Shank's has a secure supply chain with global traceability that protects its strong position in the fast-growing specialty flavorings market.
Universal Corporation expects the transaction to close in calendar-year fourth quarter, subject to customary closing conditions, and anticipates the acquisition will be accretive to earnings in fiscal year 2023. Following the close of the transaction, the existing management team will continue to run the business and report to J. Patrick O'Keefe, senior vice president of Universal Global Ventures, Inc.
ROTTERDAM, Netherlands — Launching out of stealth mode, Making.com is an online platform that aims to simplify the connection between people looking for production technology and suppliers that offer it. The platform groups technologies around the products they help make, allowing creators of all sizes access to the "hidden network" of machines, manufacturers, tooling suppliers and, therefore, the knowledge previously accessible only through long-established private networks, the site said.
Counting on the founders’ expertise of 60 years, combined with suppliers from 20 countries on three continents, Making.com collects and democratizes knowledge of processes and specialized systems, explaining the how and why, as well as connecting the who and what. It's goal is to simplify contact between makers — people interested in investing in technology or a new process — to specialized companies with knowledge of the industrial steps such as extraction, filling, sterilizing, separating and packing, to name a few. More than 300 products are already listed on Making.com at launch.
“We believe we need to celebrate the makers," Jorrit Aafjes, the CEO and founder of Making.com, said. "The know-how and efforts they put into building and improving the products we use on a daily basis are underestimated. At the same time we have a significant and immediate need, as mankind, to rethink how we make things. People must have access to new technologies that can quickly help shape better products. At Making.com, we gather these technologies around the products that they can help make, and invite all makers to contribute with their expertise and experience.”
As the world re-emerges and searches for solutions to kickstart economies and deal with the climate crisis, manufacturing could be a key-focus area. For example, in the United States alone, manufacturing accounts for 8% of the workforce, 11% of the country’s gross domestic product, 20% of capital stock, 35% of productivity growth, 55% of patents, 60% of exports and 70% of research and development investment, according to the report on U.S. manufacturing from McKinsey Global Institute in 2021.
FDA Hosts New Era of Smarter Food Safety Summit on E-Commerce
The FDA New Era of Smarter Food Safety Summit on E-Commerce: Ensuring the Safety of Foods Ordered Online and Delivered Directly to Consumers will take place virtually Oct. 19-21, 2021
New Food Freezing Concept Aims to Improve Quality, Increases Safety and Cuts Energy Use
The new freezing method, called isochoric freezing, works by storing foods in a sealed, rigid container — typically made of hard plastic or metal — completely filled with a liquid such as water.
National Food Safety Education Month is a Chance to Spread the Food Safety Message
While the national month is more focused on consumer awareness, that doesn't mean food safety and quality assurance pros don't have a role to play.
Experts Encourage Food Delivery Users to #PrepYourself with New Outreach Campaign
The Partnership for Food Safety Education is behind one of the first national food safety campaigns for food delivery.