US – The Hershey Company, one of the largest chocolate manufacturers in the world, has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Lily’s, a high-growth, better-for-you (BFY) confectionery brand.
Based today in Boulder, Colo., Lily’s traces its roots to co-founder Cynthia Tice’s decision to raise awareness about better-for-you foods by opening Center Foods, a natural foods store, in Philadelphia in 1978.
In 2012, the Cynthia launched four Lily’s chocolate style bars nationally in Whole Foods Market. Almost a decade later, the brand’s expanded line of bars, baking chips and other confections can be found across the country at key retailers.
Lily’s low-sugar products include dark and milk chocolate style bars, baking chips, peanut butter cups and other confection products.
Following the acquisition, Lily’s will add a key better-for-you confection brand to Hershey’s portfolio of iconic chocolate and candy favorites.
Hershey notes that these products are a perfect fit to its multi-pronged better-for-you snacking strategy.
“Hershey is focused on developing a BFY confection portfolio that offers a variety of choices to meet the evolving needs of our consumers,” said Chuck Raup, President U.S.
“Lily’s is a great strategic complement to our existing offerings in this growing segment of the confection category.”
Lily’s acquisition comes at a time when BFY snacking continues to grow faster than mainstream segments across snacking categories such as potato chips, ice cream and cookies.
According to Fortune Business Insights, the global healthy snacks market size was valued at US$78.13 billion in 2019 and is projected to reach US$108.11 billion by 2027, exhibiting a CAGR of 4.2% during the forecast period.
The progressive growth is due to the constant evolution in consumption patterns and inclination towards healthy food products.
Consumers nowadays look for quick, aordable, and indulgent snacking solutions that will suce to daily nutritional needs.
Hershey notes that despite their growth potential, BFY offerings, however, are still under-developed in confection.
The company is thus confident that Lily’s acquisition would enable Hershey to accelerate this growth and reimagine the future of the candy aisle in partnership with retailers.
The acquisition will be financed with cash on hand as well as short-term borrowings. Lily’s acquisition is expected to be slightly accretive to earnings in the first full year post closing.
The acquisition is subject to customary regulatory approvals and is expected to close in the next few months.
Voluntary recall of Hershey’s Chocolate Shell Topping
Earlier, the Hershey Company announced a voluntary recall of a single lot of Hershey’s Chocolate Shell Topping in a 7.25-oz. (205g) bottle with UPC (346000) after learning that 1,700 bottles were incorrectly filled with Heath Shell Topping which is made with almonds.
Hershey said it is initiating the voluntary recall to protect public health adding that people who have an allergy or severe sensitivity to almonds run the risk of serious or life-threatening allergic reaction if they consume these products.
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