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            Welcome to the latest edition of ‘Bite Size’, our quarterly overview of activity in the food and beverage sector. This edition provides analysis of M&A activity in the first quarter of 2015 and looks ahead to the trends we believe will shape the market in the coming months.

            In this issue we also take a look at how companies can take advantage of research and development tax credits and present a case study of Bon Bon Buddies, which has successfully grown its business to become Europe’s number one provider of character and branded confectionery.

            Food for thought

            Research & development (R&D) tax relief means cash – either by saving corporation tax payable or by surrendering tax losses incurred for a valuable cash repayment. From 1 April 2015, it can be worth up to 26% of a company’s R&D spend in additional tax relief.

            Answer yes to any of the following questions and you may be able to benefit from R&D tax relief. Have you recently or do you continue to:-

            • develop new food products?
            • invest in new food technology or science to create/maintain competitive advantage?
            • undertake studies to understand ingredient interactions or to optimise the shelf life of a product?
            • update your food processes to create healthier alternatives to traditional products or to generate cost or time efficiencies?
            • develop new or innovative forms of packaging?
            • develop/tailor software to improve your IT systems?

            Grant Thornton has made successful claims in respect of all of the above. Companies benefitting from the relief range from commercial fish farmers and poultry breeders to whisky distillers and makers of confectionery.

            Grant Thornton has extensive experience of working with companies of different sizes in the Food and Beverage sector. As well as having an excellent working relationship with HMRC, we provide robust, practical and tailored advice in order to ensure that claims are maximised.

            If the thought of reducing your tax liability whets your appetite, contact us to discuss how our clients have benefitted from our approach and how we can help you to save money.

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