Snacks & Candy

Utz Brands Expands Reach in Florida

Snack maker acquires 21 DSD routes in and around Orlando, Tampa and Sarasota
utz factory
Photograph: Shutterstock

HANOVER, Pa. — Utz Brands Inc. has purchased distribution rights from National Food Corp. that will expand the snack company’s reach in the Central Florida region. The acquisition of 21 direct-store delivery (DSD) routes provides Utz with an opportunity to grow in the salty snack category across Central Florida, including Orlando, Tampa and Sarasota.

Florida ranks as the third largest state for salty snack sales, according to Utz, citing IRI data. In 2020, retail sales of salty snacks in Florida were $1.8 billion, increasing 7.7% over the prior year. Utz has a growing presence in the Florida region with 2020 retail sales of $48 million that increased 16.6%, according to IRI. This represents only 2.6% of the Florida retail market, well under Utz’s national share average of 4.8%.

Over the past decade, Utz has been collaborating with Florida retailers to expand its presence and increase distribution, the company said. With this DSD acquisition, Utz will increase its investment in the Central Florida region and provide enhanced retailer support with increased distribution facilities and sales management, higher service velocity and an expanded route distribution system, it said.

“We are excited about this continued investment in the Central Florida region, as it offers a tremendous opportunity to accelerate our sales growth,“ said Steve Liantonio, senior vice president, national sales operations of Utz. “This strategic acquisition will expand our reach to customers and consumers, and better enables Utz to attract new buyers and introduce a steady flow of snacking innovation. The acquisition is consistent with our strategy of unlocking geographic white space opportunities, and we look forward to expanding our presence in the state of Florida.”

Hanover, Pa.-based Utz Brands Inc. manufactures savory snacks through popular brands, including Utz, On the Border, Golden Flake, Zapp’s, Good Health, Boulder Canyon and more.

National Food Corp. is a grocery wholesale company based in Miami.

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