FRANCE – French poultry major, LDC Group, is in talks to buy Avril Group’s Ovoteam eggs business, just a few months after both companies finalized the Matines egg brand deal.

France-based agri-food company Avril said 18 months ago it wanted to sell its eggs operations as part of a decision to focus on other areas.

The company also planned to offload its Abera pork abattoir business in Saint-Brice-en-Coglès, Brittany, and its majority shareholding in pork processor Porcgros in Rungis.

Ovoteam supplies eggs to food manufacturing and catering customers and operates from four plants that employ more than 200 staff.

Meanwhile, Statista projects the revenue in the eggs market segment in France valued at US$1.66bn in 2022 to grow annually by 2.05% (CAGR 2022-2027).

The market research firms point the market growth to technological advances, such as big data analytics, IoT, and robotics, which are integrated into farms, which will drive the market during the forecast period.

In March, Avril moved to acquire a majority stake in Italian condiments maker Eccellenza Italiana.

Set up in 2014, Eccellenza Italiana sells products including condiments and olive oil in France, the two categories are areas in which Avril has been looking to invest as part of efforts to expand its presence in consumer-facing markets.

Eccellenza Italiana sells products through mainstream retailers under its Italian Do It Better brand, while also having the Al Dente Al Salsa for products sold through more specialist outlets like Italian delis and the Il Biologico Italiano brand sold through organic wholesalers.

Avril is also showing interest in plant-based fare and is in talks to acquire local rice, legumes, and chickpeas supplier Soufflet Alimentaire from agribusiness peer InVivo Group.

Sofiprotéol, the investment arm of agri-food group Avril, has been a minority shareholder in Soufflet Alimentaire, which processes and markets products including rice, pulses, and grain mixes, since last year.

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