Global chocolate products manufacturer Barry Callebaut has signed an agreement to acquire the ingredient division of US-based Gertrude Hawk Chocolates.

Financial details of the transaction have not been disclosed. The deal is expected to close by next month.

Gertrude Hawk Ingredients is claimed to use new technology and processes to make ice cream and baking products. It is the largest division of Gertrude Hawk Chocolates.

“The acquisition allows us to expand our product portfolio into new markets, and offer an even wider range of products and services than before."

Gertrude Hawk Chocolates chairman Dave Hawk said: “Barry Callebaut has at its fingertips everything needed to continue the growth of the business, including a seasoned, highly respected sales force that calls on virtually every baker and ice cream maker of any size around the world.”

The acquisition will enable Barry Callebaut to expand its portfolio with new technologies for shell moulding, panning and enrobing, as well as solutions for shaped inclusions and peanut butter chips.

Barry Callebaut CEO Antoine de Saint-Affrique said: “We continue to consistently execute our ‘smart growth’ strategy by growing our value-added specialities and decorations business. Gertrude Hawk Ingredients adds new capabilities, technologies and skilled employees who we are happy to welcome to the Barry Callebaut family.

“The acquisition allows us to expand our product portfolio into new markets, and offer an even wider range of products and services than before. Gertrude Hawk Ingredients will play a cornerstone role in our specialities and decorations business and we intend to further build on their team and their capabilities.”

The deal will also enable Barry Callebaut to expand its specialities and decorations business in North America.