Vion Food Group to transform beef facility into plant-based site

NETHERLANDS – Vion Food Group has unveiled plans of investing in its beef processing site in Leeuwarden, Netherlands to transform the plant into a dedicated plant-based facility.

The investment is in line with the company’s move to introduce meat alternative products, as part of Vion Food’s strategy of building food chains based on the market demand.

The Vion site in Leeuwarden was built in 2017 and is currently operating as a beef facility. According to a statement issued by the company, the facility was built according to the latest standards, which means it can be easily adjusted to become suitable for plant-based production.

The meat processor plans to expand the site by adding more production line, freezing facilities and a larger storage capacity.

“The capacity for livestock processing in the Netherlands has grown significantly in the past two years, and has proven to be more than sufficient to meet the demand,” CEO Ronald Lotgerink said.

“Given the knowledge we gained from our investment a few years ago, we are now making the strategic choice to invest in a dedicated plant-based site in Leeuwarden.

“We look forward to continue our relationships with our livestock suppliers at other Vion sites and welcome arable farmers as new suppliers in our plant-based chain.”

Vion recently launched its alternative protein product under the brand ‘ME-AT’ as the company seeks to tap into the growing demand for alternative proteins.

While the company said that the will be available to consumers in early 2020, it will also be introducing product improvements and innovations in the terms of raw materials, packaging and textures.

The company is also invetsing €35 million to modernise its meat production facility in Boxtel,

Through the investment, Vion aims to realise a shorter supply chain with more value for the sale of meat in the market, improved efficiency and a more sustainable way of working by organising this at a single location.

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