Call to protect suppliers from co-op takeovers

EX-IFA president Tom Clinton has suggested measures to protect milk suppliers in PLCs where co-op shareholdings are dwindling.

Kerry Group could easily become an acquisition target for one of the giant food companies, like Danone or Nestlé, he said, during a question-and-answer session in the Irish Examiner Farming Forum.

This could leave Kerry milk suppliers delivering to a company like Nestlé, which would look for cheap milk. Co-ops’ shareholding should not be reduced below the value of milk processing assets, said Clinton, and milk suppliers should also have the option to leave the plc.

He said there are two main routes for dairy co-ops internationally. In France, companies like Danone were buying up co-ops. But in the Netherlands and New Zealand, co-ops were coming together.


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