ABP Sells Silvercrest to Kepak22 April 2013
IRELAND - Irish meat processor ABP Food is to pull out of the frozen burger sector in Ireland and has sold the Silvercrest plant at Ballybay, Co Monaghan to Kepak Group.
The plant was recently at the centre of the European horse meat contamination of beef products, when it was identified by the Irish Food Safety Authority as one of the processing plants that had horse DNA in its burgers.
The deal, which is subject to Competition Authority approval. involves the transfer of the 122 staff currently employed at Silvercrest.
Throughout the last three months ABP has maintained the Silvercrest staff on full pay whilst the future of the plant was resolved.
Paul Finnerty, Chief Executive, ABP Food Group, said: “The decision to sell the facility is the right one for both the wider Group and also for the 122 employees at the Co. Monaghan site who transfer as part of the deal.
“Our decision to sell the Ballybay facility allows the Group to move forward positively with our core chilled beef business and other developing businesses.
“I would like to take this opportunity to thank the workforce at Silvercrest for their dedication and hard work over the years, and to wish them well with their new employer.
“It has become apparent that the ABP Food Group was only one of a large number of leading European operations affected by the equine issue.
“The issue affected frozen burgers, which are not core to the Group’s future business strategy.
“The company confirms that its chilled business (which is the core activity for the Group) has been unaffected by the horse meat issue and sales of its chilled beef products have remained unaffected.
“Irish beef is held in the highest regard internationally and, as Europe’s largest beef exporter, ABP Food Group will continue to invest in expanding and developing this and the other businesses within the Group.
ABP employs 8,000 in 36 facilities in eight countries, of which 2,500 are employed in Ireland and in the past three years has invested €150 million in the expansion and development of its businesses in Ireland and abroad.
The terms of the Silvercrest deal have not been disclosed.
TheMeatSite News Desk