Under the name Morton China National Salt, the agreement includes trademark and technology licensing agreements between Morton and its Chinese partner, and together they will import, market and sell a range of packaged Morton culinary, water softening and Epsom salts across China.
The partners will also build a new packaging operation in Shanghai, which will be completed next March. Up to now, Morton has exported some of its lines to China on a small scale, though the product range is now expected to grow. The Morton joint-venture will also package Chinese-language versions of several Morton-branded products.
"Our expansion in China is an exciting step towards achieving our vision, which is to establish Morton Salt as the premium salt brand in China," said Christian Herrmann, Morton’s chief executive.
According to research, China is the world’s biggest consumer of salt due to its sizeable chemical industry and the dietary needs of 1.4bn people. Figures from 2012 suggest the country represented nearly a quarter of all global salt demand, and it is projected to increase its position as the fastest growing salt importer.