Robern Menz to manufacture Violet Crumble in South Australia
Robern Menz will purchase the Violet Crumble brand from Nestlé and manufacture the iconic chocolate bar in Adelaide, with the help of a $750,000 State Government Future Jobs Fund grant and a $900,000 loan from the Investment Attraction Agency (IASA).
Production of Violet Crumble in Adelaide will begin in the coming months, creating 30 new jobs and increasing production volume by 37 per cent at Robern Menz’s facility at Glynde.
Robern Menz will also acquire intellectual property, plant and equipment associated with Violet Crumble and will gain access to new national and international markets through Violet Crumble’s brand distribution networks.
In addition to the acquisition of Violet Crumble, Robern Menz will invest a further $4 million in 2018 upgrading and expanding their factory and constructing new warehousing facilities to support the growth of the business.
The purchase of Violet Crumble by Robern Menz not only brings the iconic brand back under Australian ownership, it brings it home to South Australia – Violet Crumble was produced in Adelaide by previous manufacturer Rowntree Hoadley up to 1985.
A company with a 150 year tradition, Robern Menz is a South Australian manufacturer of chocolate and confectionery, producing over 100 products including the National Trust Heritage listed and iconic Menz FruChocs, Crown Mints and JeliChocs.
The 2017-18 State Budget included $200 million towards a Future Jobs Fund to drive employment in South Australia and create ongoing jobs in the following key sectors:
• IT and advanced manufacturing;
• Health and biomedical research;
• Renewable energy and mining;
• Shipbuilding and defence; and
• Tourism, food and wine.
A total of 57 businesses have received offers of funding so far, for projects that will create 3,200 jobs in high-growth sectors. In addition to Robern Menz, recipients include MG Engineering, Minda, Como Glasshouse, Berry Sensation and Connecting Up.
Premier Jay Weatherill said this major investment in the business will create more than 30 new jobs so that Violet Crumble bars can be produced alongside FruChocs and Crown Mints in Glynde.
“Creating jobs is the State Government’s number one priority and the food and beverage industry has huge potential for growth in South Australia.”
“With the help of State Government funding through the Future Jobs Fund and Investment Attraction Agency we have been able to bring together two iconic Australian confectionery brands so that Violet Crumble can once again be manufactured in Adelaide,” Mr. Weatherill said.
“Like many South Australians, I love Violet Crumbles, and it’s great we can now all enjoy these chocolate bars knowing we’re also supporting South Australian jobs. Robern Menz is a household name in South Australia, and it’s great that this local business has ambitions to grow their operations and create more local jobs in food processing.”
“Right now there are more than 300 job vacancies in the tourism, food and wine industry in South Australia – we want to grow these opportunities and cement our position as a national leader in food production,” Mr. Weatherill said.
Robern Menz CEO, Phil Sims, said the company is really excited to have partnered with Nestlé and reached an agreement to acquire what is undoubtedly one of Australia’s great brands. “As the new gatekeeper of Violet Crumble, we are aware of the responsibility that comes along with owning a brand so highly regarded in the Australian market place.”
“We are fiercely passionate about Australian brands and with a significant honeycomb business of our own, the opportunity was too good to pass on. With our expertise, we can ensure that Violet Crumble is produced with no change to the recipe, and with the same passion and affinity Australians have had towards the brand since 1913,” Mr. Sims said.
“Robern Menz acknowledges the South Australian Government’s support in the future of our business, to job creation and to sustainable projects such as this bringing the manufacture of one of Australia’s favourite icons to South Australia.”