Wednesday, November 14, 2018
 French Dairy Co-ops To Merge As End to EU Quotas Looms  

French farmer-owned dairy cooperatives Sodiaal and 3A have agreed to merge to form a group with 5 billion euros ($6.5 billion) in sales as the sector braces for increased competition when European production quotas come to an end.

Sodiaal, France's largest dairy cooperative with 4.1 billion litres of milk handled and 4.4 billion euros in sales last year, will merge with its smaller peer in a deal that could be completed at the end of the year, the groups have stated.

"This tie-up ... will allow them to join forces in a context of changes expected in the dairy sector from 2015 with the end of production quotas," the statement said.

The scheduled scrapping of European Union production limits is expected to encourage farmers and processors to expand output and concentrate capacity in certain regions and plants.

The overhaul of EU dairy rules is controversial in France, the bloc's top farm economy and home to many small-scale producers. The country has been seeking measures to help livestock farmers as part of a wider reform of EU farm policy that could be finalized on Wednesday.

Sodiaal also plans to close three plants in France operated by its milk brand Candia to boost profitability in a segment that offers lower margins than cheese or yogurt.

Its other interests include a 49 percent stake in yogurt maker Yoplait alongside U.S. food group General Mills.

Source: Reuters

Posted on Thursday, June 27, 2013 (Archive on Thursday, July 04, 2013)
Posted by  Contributed by