Could snack manufacturers take over the ship from which Pirate’s Booty set sail?

VMG Partners reportedly has hired Credit Suisse Group to handle an auction for Robert’s American Gourmet Food, LLC, seller of the Pirate’s Booty brand of baked snacks. The target has revenue in excess of $100 million, a source said, and is very profitable.

Reports say VMG and Robert's American, which does business as Pirate Brands, declined to comment. Potential purchasers include General Mills Inc., Kellogg Co., Snyder's-Lance Inc. and Hain Celestial Group Inc., reports state.

Frito-Lay Inc. could also potentially be a buyer, depending on certain factors, such as how the baked snack market is defined by regulators, though reports indicate that regulatory scrutiny could come into play.

Pirate Brands was founded in 1987 by Robert Ehrlich, who discovered a void in the marketplace for healthy snack foods for children. VMG acquired a majority stake in Robert's American Gourmet Food in November 2008 for undisclosed terms.

In addition to making Pirate's Booty, Pirate Brands also makes Smart Puffs, Potato Flyers and Original Tings.