Orchard House appoints former Premier Foods CEO Gavin Darby as Chairman

Gavin Darby

Orchard House Food Ltd (“Orchard House”), one of the UK’s largest suppliers of prepared fruit, fresh fruit drinks and fruit-based desserts, is delighted to announce the appointment of Gavin Darby as Chairman.

Gavin Darby
Gavin Darby 

Gavin is a well-known figure in the food and beverage industry and brings a wealth of experience to Orchard House. He is currently Chairman of London’s largest food distribution charity, The Felix Project, and was previously President of the Food & Drink Federation. Gavin led a turnaround of Premier Foods plc, one of the UK’s biggest listed food companies, where he was CEO for six years until 2019. His experience also includes spending 15 years at the Coca-Cola Company and 10 years at Vodafone plc in senior positions, working across Europe, Africa, India, and China. 

Gavin joins Orchard House following its acquisition by the UK-based private equity fund Elaghmore in January 2021. He will work with Elaghmore and the Orchard House Management team to grow the business, primarily through market-leading product development, unlocking manufacturing efficiencies, and adding to its portfolio of customers. Orchard House and its associated brands supply retailers, on-the-go food outlets, food service providers and manufacturers throughout the UK. The business already has an impressive client list, including Marks & Spencer, Morrisons, Pret A Manger, Sainsbury’s, and Tesco. 


Headquartered in Corby, Northamptonshire, with additional facilities in Gateshead. Orchard House employs around 1,000 people and utilises a global supply chain, sourcing and preparing a range of exotic fresh fruits from across the world.

Gavin Darby, Chairman, Orchard House, said: Orchard House boasts an impressive list of clients, and products and, with Elaghmore’s support, is poised for a new chapter of growth. As we look beyond COVID-19 and Brexit, I see exciting opportunities for the business, particularly in developing and expanding Orchard House’s on-the-go fruit and beverage range. We will continuously strive to offer our customers the best service and quality with investment in people, technology, and processes. I look forward to working closely with Elaghmore and the Orchard House team.”

Andy Ducker, Co-Founder, Elaghmore Partners, added: “We see the appointment of Gavin as a significant step in our growth plans for Orchard House. He has a wealth of industry knowledge and experience that makes him the ideal person to lead the business forward and extend Orchard House’s position as a market leader.”

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Elaghmore Advisory LLP is an Appointed Representative of NCM Fund Services Limited (FRN 183732) which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority

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