Young's silent on fish deal capture

YOUNG’S Seafood has so far remained silent on a report that it has captured a key coated fish contract from a local rival.
When approached by Fish Update, the company said it could not confirm or deny the report that it had taken the private label coated fish contract for the Iceland frozen food retail chain from Five Star Fish.
But it would seem that competition to tie up fish processing deals is hotting up. The seafood business plays its cards close to its chest and it is not unusual for seafood processors to remain tight lipped about contracts, with news tending to filter out through unofficial sources, such as the fish markets.
Both companies are based in Grimsby. Five Star is owned by the Two Sisters Food Group, headed by tycoon Ranjit Boparan. Although its main business is poultry, the company also has significant seafood interests.
Despite the ‘no comment’ reply, sources in Grimsby said there were smiles on the faces of Young’s executives last week, suggesting the company had been successful.
Five Star was in the news recently when it captured £40 million of a total £60 million Marks & Spencer contract which had previously been held by Icelandic Seachill. The remainder has gone to processors outside Grimsby.
Five Star Fish was founded in the 1980s to supply frozen coated fish to the food service and retail markets – to the likes of Iceland and JD Wetherspoons. But in the last three or four years it has branched into the chilled fish market.
The Iceland deal will provide some comfort for Young’s, which took a several knock a year ago when it lost the Sainsbury’s salmon processing contract, worth around £100 million, to Marine Harvest.
That change cost hundreds of jobs in the Fraserburgh area and led to questions being asked in the Scottish parliament.