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Capreolus back in production after Hunt’s buys charcutier out of administration

Posted: 16 January 2024

By Michael Lane


Charcuterie producer Capreolus Fine Foods has been bought out of administration by fellow Dorset firm Hunt’s Food Group, with founder David Richards retained to run production and NPD.

Capreolus will now offer a revised range of 12 retail products and will also be launching a foodservice brand, Charcuterie For Chefs.

Richards told FFD Hunt’s has now taken over the company, with production already underway, and retail customers keen to re-list the Capreolus range, which will still include Great Taste 3-star winning Dorset Coppa and the Salami with Pink Peppercorns. 

Production of the company’s New Forest Pannage Ham, which has PGI status, will also resume. 

The charcutier placed the business into administration in November 2023 when a another potential rescue deal fell through.

Richards explained that trading had become increasingly difficult with onset of Covid. 

“We lost 90% of our sales,” he said, with furlough failing to cover tax, NI and pensions for their staff, and the ensuing cost-of-living crisis prevented them from servicing their debt.

Hunt’s chairman Richard Hunt was alerted to Capreolus’s plight via a local business group.

The Sherborne-based company also owns the Jon Thorner’s butchery brand, which Richards said would be working with the newly acquired charcuterie operation.

This article first appeared in the January-February 2024 edition of Fine Food Digest .