COFCO Corporation, China’s largest grain, edible oil and food conglomerate, announced on December 23 in Beijing that it had signed an acquisition agreement with Smithfield Foods from US and Artal Group from Italy for acquiring the two’s subsidiary joint venture in China, Marverick Food. The acquisition value amounts to RMB 194 million. The acquired company will be managed by COFCO Meat Investment. This is COFCO’s another significant move in building the whole value chain of its meat business, considering Smithfield Foods is the world’s largest hog meat processer and Artal Group is one of Europe’s largest food companies, following COFCO’s another two meat projects in Tianjin and Dongtai of Jiangsu Province either of which has the capacity of breeding 1 million hogs in an ecology-friendly manner.
Marverick Food produces high-quality low-temperature, roast and frozen meat products. It started as meat supplier to Hong Kong, seen as Hong Kong’s kitchen, and then expanded to metropolises of China’s mainland, like Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzen. Especially in Guangzhou and Shenzhen, it is the best seller in the low temperature meat market.
COFCO Meat Investment is developing on the whole value chain basis in both poultry and livestock industries, i.e., integrating feed processing, breeding, butchering, processing, cold chain logistics, distribution, and import and export. With Marverick’s experience in R&D and operation in the meat business, this acquisition was expected to invigorate COFCO Meat Investment for development to a higher level, as Mr. Jiang Guojin, General Manager of COFCO Meat Investment said.
Besides, the acquisition will bring COFCO not only Marverick’s market share but also its expertise. In turn, it will also promote Marverick’s brand image and its expansion in China’s mainland market. Mr. Patrick Yu, President of COFCO Corporation, held an optimistic view.