Through organic growth and acquisition, Rhodes Food Group enjoys a rich history filled with people committed to the production of high quality, innovative food products.


The Competition Commission approves the acquisitions of both Pakco and Ma Baker Companies.


The Group makes 5 acquisitions: The first is the acquisition of the business assets of Deemster (Pty) Ltd. Deemster, enabling Rhodes Food Group to expand its offering into salads and pickles. Next is the food service business from General Mills South Africa, which produces dry and frozen and bakery products. The third acquisition for the year is Ali BaBa Foods Holdings (Pty) Ltd, which is known for the manufacture of Halaal eastern-inspired snack foods. Setting its sights on the dry packed food market, the Group then acquired Durban-based Pakco, which produces has portfolio of strong and well-known brands including Bisto, Hinds and Gold Dish. The last dealings for 2016 saw Rhodes Food Group acquire another KwaZulu-Natal based company – pie producer Ma Baker. The latter two acquisitions are subject to due diligence investigations and competition approval.


The Group's first acquisition for the financial year is the Western Cape-based fruit juice producer, Pacmar. This is followed by Boland Pulp, which is a leading manufacturer of industrial fruit and vegetable purees. In the same year, Rhodes Food Group acquires the pies and pastry products producer Saint Pie, which is based in Lydenburg, Mpumalanga.


On the 2nd of October 2014, Rhodes Food Group lists on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange securing its position as one of South Africa’s leading food manufacturers and producers.


Rhodes Food Group acquires Trout Hall®, a premium long-life fruit brand in the United Kingdom.


Rhodes Food Group acquires the Bull Brand business from KAP Industrial Holdings (Pty) Ltd. In addition to the iconic Bull Brand range, the acquisition included the business' other well-known brands Gant’s and Spekenam.


A management led buy-out sees the Ivor Ferreira Trust sell Rhodes Food Group in 2012. The new shareholding consortium comprises Capitalworks, Morgan Stanley Alternative Investment Partners and management.


Rhodes Food Group builds a state-of-the-art Ready Meals factory in Gauteng. The plant will produce fresh and frozen ready meals, including fresh pasta and sauces. The Group also acquires the Tulbagh based fruit canning operations of Del Monte.


Rhodes Food Group acquires the Giants Canning Limpopo based vegetable cannery.


Rhodes Food Group acquires Sunpie.


The Group installs a state-of-the-art packaging facility for packing fruit into plastic cups in their Eswatini operation, affording Rhodes Food Group entry into the international fruit snacking market.


Rhodes Food Group acquires Magpie Foods and the Magpie brand – expanding their offering into the pies and pastries market segment. 


Rhodes Food Group (Pty) Ltd. is formed. In 1999, Anglo American Farms sells their food division (including the RFF canning operation and Wonderland Foods) to the Ivor Ferreira Trust. The Trust re-names the operation RFF Foods (Pty) Ltd., which was later changed to Rhodes Food Group (Pty) Ltd.


Del Monte becomes the first fruit processor in South Africa to do both canning and aseptic fruit processing.


Zululand Fruit Producers buys Eswatini Fruit Canners.


Wonderland Foods is started in Caledon in the Western Cape, the company specialises in recipe-prepared meals. Many years later, Wonderland Foods forms an important part of the Rhodes Food Group Ready Meals operations. The same year, Del Monte buys SAPCO, which can trace its roots to 1954.


Swazican (built in 1954) enjoys a strong export relationship with the USA until sanctions against South Africa are introduced in the 1980s. Swazican and Zululand Fruit Producers form close ties.


In 1969 Anglo American, De Beers and Rand Selection Corporation Ltd. become majority shareholders in Rhodes Fruit Farms and renames it Anglo American Farms, or Amfarms, for short.


Calpak purchases the Tulbagh Fruit Industry (formed in 1954) and embarks on a major expansion drive. The new owners change its name to the South African Preserving Company or SAPCO.

Late 1950s

Mr. Cyril Hurwitz, a butcher and farmer living the former Transvaal area buys a canning factory at Krugersdorp and shortly thereafter, he launches the now iconic Bull Brand offering. Over the years the company diversified into frozen and convenience ranges and became the supplier to franchise outlets and fast food markets. The company subsequently acquired the Spekenam and Gant’s brands.


Ward Gant opens Gant’s Food (PTY) Ltd in Strand.


Ivor Ferreira buys Zululand Fruit Producers pineapple farm and canning factory and finds an export partner in the form of Peaty Mills Plc. in London.


Swazican Fruit Canners (processing pineapples and citrus) is built in Malkerns, Eswatini. In the same year a group of farmers form Tulbagh Fruit Industry Pty Ltd. Engineering firm, H.G. Molenaar, was instrumental in building the factory’s equipment and the company remains a key supplier to the current day Rhodes Food Group with regards to innovative packaging equipment.


Rhodes Fruit Farms establishes the Ayrshire dairy herd. Today, it is one of the oldest and well-known stud herds in the country. Its lineage can be traced to a top Ayrshire bull, which was imported to South Africa in 1890, by a Mr. Wolters of Scotland.


Rhodes Fruit Farms opens the first cannery in South Africa at Groot Drakenstein for the production of fruit and jam.


Rhodes Fruit Farms Ltd. was established in 1896.