CHICAGO — CORE Industrial Partners LLC, a Chicago-based private equity firm, has acquired J&K Ingredients Corp., a Paterson, NJ-based manufacturer of baked foods ingredients. The company’s product line is focused on natural, organic and clean label products.

Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Founded in 1899, J&K Ingredients developed the baking industry’s first natural mold inhibitor more than four decades ago and remains at the forefront of natural mold inhibitor innovation, custom formulation, and manufacturing. The company’s signature product lines include Bred-Mate, Rice-Mate and SOR-Mate. SOR-Mate is the first fruit-based natural replacement for sorbic acid and potassium sorbate.

In addition, J&K Ingredients offers more than 400 products spanning 13 categories, including bread and roll bases, dough conditioners, milk replacers, flavors, emulsions and stabilizers. The company’s customers include commercial bakeries and bakery product wholesalers and distributors.

J&K Ingredients operates three facilities in Paterson and holds Food and Drug Administration, halal, kosher, FSSC 22000, and organic certifications.

“J&K is a pioneer in the development of on-trend, clean label ingredients,” said John May, managing partner of CORE. “The food industry continues to covert to clean label ingredients in response to consumer demand, and we believe J&K is well-positioned to benefit from this powerful tailwind given its scalable operations, broad portfolio of products and in-house ability to innovate and develop new formulations through its cutting-edge R&D lab.”

Matthew Puglisi, partner of CORE, said the private equity firm has identified numerous opportunities to accelerate organic growth in its business, including rapid commercialization of recently developed new products.

“We’ll work to augment these compelling organic growth initiatives with strategic acquisitions to expand the company’s customer base, product offering and end market reach,” he said.

James K. Sausville, president of J&K Ingredients, called CORE an ideal fit for where J&K is focusing its efforts.

“As a fourth-generation owner of a family business proudly tracing its founding back to the 19th century, I was looking for the perfect partner that could provide the resources and support to execute substantial growth opportunities while respecting our unique history, culture and values,” he said. “CORE is the ideal fit, and on behalf of all J&K Ingredients employees, we’re excited to kick off this next phase of company growth.”

CORE is a private equity firm investing exclusively in manufacturing and industrial technology companies in North America. The firm has been involved across more than 50 transactions representing over $2.5 billion in enterprise value. CORE is currently investing out of an institutional fund and has $230 million of assets under management.