UPPER SADDLE RIVER, N.J. — The number of food industry mergers was down about 21% in 2012, compared with 2011, according to The Food Institute here — an indication "of how temperate the environment was for mergers and acquisitions," it noted.
"Fiscal uncertainty and frustration with Washington politics created a hesitant approach to M&A among investment firms and private capital in 2012, as the market reacted strongly to news of breakthroughs or impasses in sequestration negotiations," Henry Mollman, an analyst for the institute, explained.
Read more: 2012 Food Retail Acquisitions: Tip of the Iceberg? 
There were approximately 301 mergers last year, the institute said — 157 in the first half of the year and 144 in the second half.
The institute said food processors experienced 83 mergers during 2012, only five more than in 2011.
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