BELGIUM – International producer of meat, meat products and plant-based alternatives Vion Food Group has announced that it intends to acquire Adriaens, a beef producer based in Zottegem, Belgium, as it aims to expand its position in the country.

Headquartered in the Netherlands, Vion has production locations in the Netherlands and Germany and operates under four business units namely Pork, Beef, Food Service and Retail.

Based in Zottegem, Adriaens is one of the largest cattle slaughterhouses in Belgium, with a capacity of 2,000 animals a week.

Its acquisition forms part of Vion’s strategy to bolster its position in the Western Europe market, alongside its locations in the Netherlands and Germany.

The news of its planned takeover of Adriaens follows a period of ‘intensive cooperation’ between the two businesses.

With the acquisition, Vion says that it aims to establish a strong supply chain that guarantees quality and transparency in the beef market.

Vion Food Group CEO, Ronald Lotgerink, said: “Our customers want to see what they are buying and where it comes from. That’s why we are working on regional chains that are assembled based on the demand from our customers.

“With the strengthening of our beef activities in Belgium, we will achieve a better spread of our activities for our customers in Western Europe.

“Together with the Adriaens team, we hope to further strengthen the Vion group’s relationships with farmers and customers in this important Western European region for beef cattle.”

The acquisition comes at a time when Vion and other meat processing companies have been adversely impacted by the corona virus pandemic to an extent of being forced to shut down operations to curb its spread.

Vion Food Group found itself in a precarious situation back in may 2020 and was forced to close its production facility in Groenlo following a corona virus outbreak among its workforce.

The company later opened its operations in June after implementing a number of safety measures which included daily large-scale cleaning and disinfection and daily health checks.

Earlier in 2019, Vion announced that it had invested US€35 million to modernise its meat production facility in Boxtel, the Netherlands, as the company aimed to consolidate its production operations and optimise its supply chain.

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