Food and drink

Stephenson Harwood's food and drink team brings to the table wide ranging experience acting for clients at all levels of the supply chain.  We assist clients with their everyday legal needs as well as transformational events, working closely with our clients to provide commercially focused solutions within budget.
  • Profile
  • Experience
  • Key contacts

We advise a wide variety of national and global businesses, including:

  • distributors and suppliers
  • manufacturers and producers
  • entrepreneurs
  • investors
  • importers and exporters

Our team of experienced specialist lawyers are attuned to the needs of food and drink businesses, whether it is a routine operational matter or a game changing transaction or commercial dispute, providing clear and concise advice tailored to the needs and objectives of the client. We regularly advise on:

  • acquisitions, disposals and joint ventures
  • invoice discounting, factoring and receivables financing
  • capital raising, both of equity and debt
  • manufacturing, distribution and agency agreements
  • product liability and commercial disputes
  • competition compliance and merger control clearances
  • real estate transactions and planning and environmental matters
  • licensing and protection of IP
  • day-to-day and transactional employment and pensions advice

"got up to speed very fast"
M&A Director, Findus Group


We advised this leading frozen foods business on the acquisition of the frozen potato business of Lutosa (part of McCain), a long-term contract/outsourced manufacturing agreement and transitional service arrangements.

Perfetti van Melle

We advised Perfetti van Melle, the owner of the Chupa Chups, Mentos and Smint, in bringing multi-jurisdictional IP infringement cases. We also provide regular trade mark and packaging clearance as well as IP strategy advice.

Senoble UK

We regularly advise Senoble UK Limited, a manufacturer and supplier of own-label desserts and pastries to supermarkets, on all aspects of its customer relationships, procurement, logistics and warehousing, real estate and employment issues.

Hotel Chocolat

We advised Hotel Chocolat, the premium chocolate grower, manufacturer and retailer on various corporate matters.


We advised on this LSE listed UK food manufacturer’s deficit-for-equity swap deal clearing the way for Uniq’s pension scheme to take 90 per cent of the company’s equity. We then advised on a disposal process for its stake culminating in the recommended £113m public takeover offer by Greencore.


We advised on many aspects of the UK and European businesses of the worldwide market leader in poultry breeding, including supply agreements with breeders, procurement of feed and one-off projects such as joint ventures and acquisitions.

Krispy Kreme Doughnuts

We advised Krispy Kreme Doughnuts on all aspects of its Myanmar franchising arrangements and manufacturing and distribution of products in Myanmar.

Accolade Wines

We acted in a £160 million claim in connection with the defective design and construction of the largest wine production and distribution facility in the UK involving multi-party English High Court proceedings.

SAB Miller

We advised one of the world’s largest brewers on the title due diligence, agreement for lease, lease and ongoing operational aspects in respect of the construction of a new brewing research facility and on their UK office requirements.

O-I Europe

We advised this major glass bottle manufacturer on the expansion of its relationship with Nestlé Waters which involved the acquisition of VDL, a single-furnace glass container plant in Vergèze, France.

European ice cream manufacturer

We are advising a European ice cream manufacturer on their Middle East franchise arrangements. This includes drafting and negotiating franchise agreements, know-how licence agreements and trade mark licence agreements.

Latest news & insights

16 Oct 2023

From News

Stephenson Harwood advises on Bon Vivant fundraising

Law firm Stephenson Harwood LLP has advised Sparkfood and Sofinnova Partners on the recent €15 million fundraising for Bon Vivant, a French start-up that produces sust..


© Stephenson Harwood LLP 2016. Any reference to Stephenson Harwood in this document means Stephenson Harwood LLP and/or its affiliated undertakings. Any reference to a partner is used to refer to a member of Stephenson Harwood LLP.