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Tyson Moves to India with Joint Venture

by 5m Editor
1 July 2008, at 9:44am

INDIA – Tyson officials today announced they have acquired majority ownership of one of the leading poultry processing businesses in India.

Yesterday Tyson purchased 51 per cent ownership of Godrej Foods, Ltd., based in Mumbai. Godrej Foods is a subsidiary of Godrej Agrovet, Ltd., one of India’s leading agribusinesses. The joint venture between Godrej Agrovet and Tyson will be called Godrej Tyson Foods. Annual sales for the venture are initially expected to be in the range of $50 million and are anticipated to grow as operations are expanded.

The venture includes one chicken processing facility in Mumbai, in western India, and another in Bangalore, in the southern part of the country. The two plants have a combined production capacity of 60,000 birds per day and have approximately 1,000 contract production workers. The Godrej processing operations are supplied by six contracted hatcheries and a network of contracted broiler operations, which produce live birds to the company's specifications.

The well-trained, professional sales organization of Godrej currently sells retail fresh chicken under the “Real Good Chicken” brand name and processed chicken, such as breaded nuggets and patties, along with a line of frozen vegetables, under the “Yummiez” brand. The company, which is also a major supplier to the foodservice market, has an extensive logistics and distribution network designed to effectively serve its customer base in western, southern and northern India.

“Poultry production and consumption is growing in India and we believe the timing is right for us to bring our expertise and resources to this emerging market,” said Rick Greubel, group vice president and international president for Tyson Foods. “India has population of more than 1.1 billion people, and while per capita chicken consumption there is currently less than five pounds a year, its annual growth rate of more than 10% is among the highest in the world.”

Greubel also noted, “With the help of our partners, we plan to expand the production capacity of the existing operations and build additional processing facilities to better reach consumers in the northern and eastern regions of the country.”

Tyson and Godrej plan to immediately initiate efforts to expand the capacity of the poultry plants already in operation. Efforts to build new processing plants in other parts of the country will likely begin within the next several years.

“We’re excited about partnering with Tyson, because of its international reputation for quality and innovation,” said Balram Yadav, chief executive officer of Godrej Agrovet Ltd. “We believe this joint venture will boost our continued efforts to modernize the way high quality poultry products are developed, produced and distributed in our country.”