French now own traditional Cornish pasties after Cornwall company sold off


Traditional Cornish pasties are now owned by…the French. Pasty company Proper Cornish, which has made the local delicacy for more than three decades, has been snapped up by Groupe Boncolac, a French snacks supplier that sells to more than 30 countries.

Proper Cornish boss Chris Pauling said he was confident the group was the right partner to take its business “to the next level”.

“We’ve worked hard to build Proper Cornish to where it is today, and we just know there is so much more potential.

“As a founding member of Proper Cornish, I was extremely keen to ensure we found the right partner to take the company to the next level, and I’m confident that Groupe Boncolac is that partner.

“Its brand and people ethics, and its product quality, reflect those of Proper Cornish.”

Established in 1988, Proper Cornish now operates from a newly refurbished 58,000sqft bakery in Bodmin.

It was named Bakery Manufacturer of the Year at the 2020 Baking Industry Awards.

Reporting a turnover of £26million, it supplies branded and own-label products to major and independent retailers, sporting stadia, contract caterers and wholesalers.

Annette Miller, manager of the St Austell Business Improvement District, said: “To be honest it’s not ideal, but it’s a business that hasn’t closed. I have at least one or two Cornish pasties a week.

“I would prefer the business to stay local but I would assume they are not adding any cordon bleu to the pasties and that the manufacturing will stay the same with no loss of jobs.”

Groupe Boncolac CEO Alexandre Vigneron said: “We are thrilled to welcome Proper Cornish. I have been impressed by the quality of the management team, as well as the great product positioning with respect to the traditional manufacturing techniques.

“We are looking forward to starting a fruitful collaboration between our companies in the UK and abroad.”

A spokesman for the Cornish Pasty Association said: “We are here to champion and protect the authenticity and distinctiveness of the genuine Cornish pasty.

“While Proper Cornish has joined Groupe Boncolac, their pasties will still be made in Cornwall at the same place by the same team and with the same recipe, ensuring they do remain genuinely Cornish.”

Research by Tesco found more than half of under-35s have never heard of a Cornish pasty, compared to 94 per cent of those 44 or over.


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