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UK’s Biggest Poultry Firm Served Up for Sale

by 5m Editor
20 February 2008, at 11:24am

UK - Grampian, the biggest supplier of meat and poultry to Britain’s supermarkets and one of the country’s oldest food groups, could soon pass into foreign hands.

The Times has learnt that at least three bidders are putting the finishing touches on final bids for the chicken, beef and pork producer, which was forced into a sale after it became unable to service a mountain of debt.

It is understood that Vion, the privately owned Dutch meat giant, which is Europe’s largest, is on the shortlist of bidders, along with Sadia, of Brazil, one of the world’s largest pork and poultry suppliers.

British food companies have come under increasing pressure as the price of commodities — such as wheat for animal feed — have rocketed and retailers slash prices to boost sales. They have also been hit by the rise of television chefs such as Jamie Oliver, who have attacked mass-processing methods and championed more expensive organic produce over battery-farmed poultry. The two foreign food companies are vying with CCMP, the American private equity firm that was spun out of JP Morgan after its merger with Bank One. CCMP is backing Grampian’s management team as part of a proposed management buyout.

Source: TimesOnline

5m Editor