The French group LDC and the Ukrainian agro-industrial MHC are in the running to take at least part of the poultry troubled Doux
The French group LDC which owns the Loué chickens and the Ukrainian agroindustrialist MHP are in the running to take back at least part of the poultry troubled Doux, victim of its lack of competitiveness internationally.
Although the Sarthe group did not give any immediate details on the content of its offer, Ukrainian issued a statement Wednesday evening confirming the filing of its proposal and its willingness to develop a “long-term strategic industrial project to Chateaulin, Quimper and Plouray “in Brittany.
MHP has “filed a binding offer” for the “partial recovery” of Doux, told AFP a spokesman for MHP. In particular, it offers the prospect of an investment of “76 million euros” to “build a new factory” in Chateaulin in Finistère “within two years” and “to upgrade” others facilities.
The strategy of the Ukrainian group “would allow the immediate safeguard of about 285 positions to which would be added about 430 positions at the start of the new production unit in Chateaulin,” the statement said.
Employees of the Chateaulin factory who will not be taken back immediately, would then benefit from “a hiring priority”.
“This is a complete change of strategy,” said the spokeswoman, “abandoning the production of some frozen products for export, replaced by fresh products for the French market” she adds.
– Brazilian competition –
Despite its takeover in March 2016 by the second French cooperative group Terrena, Doux’s setbacks have accumulated: the group loses more than 35 million euros per year.
“Brazilians have flooded the Saudi market”, where Doux had a good position, told AFP a representative CGT Doux, Patrick Moigne March 12. “It’s not that we do not have customers, it’s the price, the problem: every tonne we produce, we lose money,” he added.
In early March, Terrena said she could not support “forever” the group that employs about 1,200 people after a thousand job cuts in 2012.
Terrena hopes in particular to avoid having to pay a fine of some 80 million euros, to which Doux could be exposed for selling chickens with water content higher than standards.
A judgment on the subject of the Administrative Court of Rennes is expected on April 6, while Doux could ask for its liquidation from April 3.
But the problem of funds for Sweet is the lack of international competitiveness. Terrena has estimated that Doux needs € 100 million to change its business model via industrial investments in marketing, communication and research.
Another Breton poultry company Tilly Sabco International, which has already had two social plans since 2014, was placed Tuesday in receivership by the Commercial Court of Brest.
The sector has not been able to adapt to the demands of the international market that wants more and more cuts, while France is one of the few countries where the consumer still buys a lot of whole chickens.
– Low cost chicken –
“The average weight of a chicken in France is 1.9 kilograms, but all our neighbors have chickens weighing 2.4 or 2.5 kilograms.They do not have the same genetics” and once the live is turned into carcass, and cut into pieces (fillets, thighs, drumsticks), “this small shift becomes big because the yield of the nets is better” for the chickens coming from abroad, which explains, according to Christian Renault, of the office of AND international study, the lack of competitiveness of French poultry.
Since the arrival of MHP in the file, driven by Bercy, the great fear of some elected is that MHP “bought the brand to make low-cost chicken in Ukraine”, while enjoying the aura of the brand Sweet in the Middle -Orient, told AFP a parliamentary source.
The senator (LR) Vendée Bruno Retailleau has also struggled to “push a French solution” other than that of MHP does not plan to take over the unit of chickens Chantonnay located in his department.
For its part, the Brittany region said Monday ready to put up to 15 million euros on the table to support a possible recovery project.
The LDC group, which owns the brands Loué, Le Gaulois, Maître Coq, Marie and Traditions d’Asie, has not given any details on the offer he has announced to have submitted.
With a turnover of 3.6 billion euros in 2016-17, LDC, whose Minister of Agriculture Stéphane Travert must meet the leaders Friday in the Sarthe, is the emblem of French quality chicken having withstood the crisis that hit its competitors.