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Olymel buying into Quebec pork packer Lucyporc


Canada’s biggest pork and poultry exporter is set to take a stake in a Quebec pork packer specializing in cuts for the Japanese market and other overseas buyers.

Olymel, the meat packing and processing arm of Quebec’s Coop Federee, announced a share exchange Monday with Quebec livestock producer and processor Groupe Robitaille, which would give Olymel a 50 per cent share in Robitaille’s hog slaughter, butchering and processing arm, Aliments Lucyporc.

Lucyporc has a staff of over 350 people at Yamachiche, about 20 km west of Trois-Rivieres in Quebec’s Mauricie region, and specializes in products such as Nagano pork and the Mugifuji brand for the Japanese export market, among other products and brands for export to markets such as Mexico, Europe and the U.S.

Financial terms of the deal, which will need approval from the federal Competition Bureau, weren’t disclosed.

The joint venture, once cleared, would continue to operate under the Lucyporc name. It would also operate Viandes Dunham, a separate Robitaille processing company employing about 30 people at Dunham, southeast of Montreal, supplying frozen cuts to the hotel, restaurant and institutional sectors.

Lucyporc, which family-owned Robitaille set up at Yamachiche in 1998, will continue under current management and the joint venture will honour commitments to current customers, the companies said.

The Robitaille farms supplying Lucyporc with hogs meeting its niche specifications will continue to do so, the companies said, but otherwise, the deal “does not affect other activities in which Olymel and Groupe Robitaille are involved.”

“I firmly believe that the companies founded by our family, which we would like to see grow, will advance further on the path of excellence with Olymel,” Groupe Robitaille president Claude Robitaille said Monday in the companies’ release.

“The synergies that will result from this alliance in terms of developing new markets, technical expertise and added value are part of a long-term vision that will enable us to better respond to the challenges of the markets.” — Network

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