A businessman who co-founded well known Melton food manufacturer, Samworth Brothers, has died aged 87.
Sir David Samworth, started the Samworth Brothers business, which is most known for its packaged sandwiches, alongside his brother John in the 1970s.
He stood down as chief executive in 1999 and went on to become life president.
Current group chairman Mark Samworth said the death of his father represented “a significant moment” for the business.
“Without Sir David, supported by his late brother John, there would be no Samworth Brothers,” he said.
“It was the vision, drive and values of the two brothers that laid down the strong foundations of our business and which drove such outstanding success. Whether in his early days growing the original Samworth family business or later building Samworth Brothers, a strong set of values always permeated David’s business life. He placed great importance on people as the cornerstone of any successful organisation and always sought to create a working environment that reflected this ethos. He also believed quality had to be at the heart of any business, whether that was quality of facilities, the product, customer service or our relationship with suppliers. He was enormously proud of the business and the achievements of everyone in Samworth Brothers.”
Before it became what it is today, the Samworth Brothers business started out life as a firm which specialised in pig dealing. Sir David’s grandfather George Samworth begun the family firm in the late 1890s.
The business now has a £1.4bn group turnover and employs more than 11,500 people. It also owns Ginsters, the pasty maker and is credited with making Melton Mowbray certified pork pies.
Outside of the business, Sir David married his wife Rosemary in 1969 and has four children – three daughters and a son – and seven grandchildren.
He was knighted in 2009 for his services to charity.