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Jacob's is a brand name for several lines of biscuits and crackers in Ireland and the United Kingdom. The brand name in Ireland is owned by Jacob Fruitfield Food Group, part of the Valeo Foods Group, and in the UK it is owned under licence by United Biscuits.


Jacob's "1885" registered trademark used on several lines of biscuits
View of the production floor, Jacob's Ireland factory, 1910

The originator of the Jacob's brand name was the small biscuit bakery, W & R Jacob, founded in 1851 in Bridge Street, Waterford, Ireland by William Beale Jacob and his brother Robert. It later moved to Bishop Street in Dublin, Ireland, with a factory in Peter's Row. A factory in Liverpool was opened in 1914. The Bishop Street premises was one of several prominent Dublin buildings occupied by rebels during the Easter Rising of 1916. In 1922 a separate English company was formed, W & R Jacob (L'pool) Ltd.[1] The two branches separated, with the Dublin branch retaining the W & R Jacob name while the Liverpool branch was renamed Jacob's Bakery Ltd. In the 1970s, W & R Jacob in Dublin merged with Boland's Biscuits to form Irish Biscuits Ltd. and moved to Tallaght, Ireland. The Liverpool factory joined Associated Biscuits in 1960, which was purchased by Nabisco in 1982.[2]

In 1990, the two companies once again came under common ownership and became Jacob's Biscuit Group when they were acquired by the French company Groupe Danone. In July 2004, Groupe Danone and United Biscuits announced that they had made an agreement for the latter to acquire Jacob's Biscuit Group.[3][4] With the acquisition of Groupe Danone's biscuit division by Kraft Foods, the production and sales of Jacob's biscuits in Malaysia are done through Kraft Foods Malaysia. However, days later Groupe Danone, United Biscuits, and Fruitfield Foods announced that Jacob's Biscuit Group would be split, with United Biscuits acquiring only the UK portion of the Group and Fruitfield Foods acquiring the Ireland portion.[5][6][7] Fruitfield Foods was subsequently renamed the Jacob Fruitfield Food Group and is now part of the Valeo Food Group. Valeo Foods was established in September 2010 through the merger of Batchelors and Origin Foods.[8]

Since their acquisitions, United Biscuits and Jacob Fruitfield Food Group have sparred in court over the use of the Jacob's brand name.[9][10]

In 2009, after 156 years of making biscuits in Ireland, Jacob Fruitfield shut its Tallaght plant. 220 jobs were lost while the company retained around 100 staff in a variety of roles.[11]

United Biscuits brand lines[edit]

Jacob Fruitfield Food Group brand lines[edit]

  • Jacob's Afternoon Tea
  • Jacob's Chocolate Coated Biscuits
  • Jacob's Club
  • Jacob's Coconut Creams
  • Jacob’s Cookies
  • Jacob's Cream Crackers
  • Jacob's Creams
  • Jacob's Elite
  • Jacob's Fig Rolls
  • Jacob's Goldgrain
  • Jacob's Kimberley
  • Jacob's Mikado
  • Jacob’s Oat Crumbles
  • Jacob's Plain Biscuits
  • Jacob's Teatime
  • Jacob's USA

See also[edit]


  1. ^ The History of Advertising Trust (2011-06-10). "1958 Jacobs Club Biscuit (00_00_1958 HAT_20_01)". Retrieved 2011-08-13. 
  2. ^ Liverpool Record Office (2011-08-13). "W & R Jacob Ltd.; 1839-". Retrieved 2011-08-13. 
  3. ^ "Groupe Danone Sells Biscuit Operations in the UK and Ireland" (Press release). Groupe Danone. 2004-07-23. Retrieved 2007-10-30. 
  4. ^ "UB to Acquire Jacob's" (Press release). United Biscuits. 2004-07-23. Retrieved 2007-10-30. 
  5. ^ "Groupe Danone Has Just Finalized the Sale of its Biscuit Operations in the Republic of Ireland (W & R Jacob Ltd.) to Fruitfield Foods Ltd" (Press release). Groupe Danone. 2004-08-03. Retrieved 2007-10-30. 
  6. ^ "Update on UB's Acquisition of Jacob's" (Press release). United Biscuits. 2004-08-03. Retrieved 2007-10-30. 
  7. ^ "Fruitfield Foods Buys W&R Jacob" (Press release). Jacob Fruitfield Food Group. 2004-08-03. Retrieved 2007-10-30. 
  8. ^ http://www.rte.ie/news/business/2010/0910/135449-origin/
  9. ^ RTÉ News (2007-10-01). "Legal Battle Over Fig Roll Packaging". Retrieved 2007-10-30. 
  10. ^ RTÉ News (2007-10-03). "McVitie's Ordered to Change All Packaging". Retrieved 2007-10-30. 
  11. ^ RTÉ News (2009-05-22). "Jacob's ends production after 156 years". Retrieved 2009-08-06. 

External links[edit]