Baker McKenzie and DLA Piper in Japan’s tofu expansion to US

Baker McKenzie and DLA Piper in Japan tofu expansion

Baker McKenzie (Gaikokuho Joint Enterprise) advised Japanese company House Foods on its acquisition of Keystone Natural Holdings, a US maker of tofu and other plant-based products. DLA Piper advised Keystone.

Baker McKenzie’s team in Tokyo was led by a co-managing partner Akifusa Takada, with the support of counsel Chizu Matsumaru. DLA Piper did not disclose the lawyers who worked on the deal.

“As sustainable practices become increasingly important at both the individual and corporate levels, we believe that this acquisition is an extremely important step in contributing to a sustainable society by strengthening the plant-based food product business, which is attracting attention due to both health concerns and the need to reduce humanity’s environmental impact,” said Takada.

House Foods has been operating a tofu business in the US since 1983 with two plants. As demand for tofu and other tofu products has been increasing in recent years, the company plans to build its third plant in Kentucky, which will be operational by 2025.

The acquisition was completed at the end of September, resulting in Keystone becoming a subsidiary of the House Foods Group and is expected to accelerate its US market expansion plans. The combined company will have eight manufacturing facilities across North America.