THE NETHERLANDS, Boxtel. 2019 was a good year from a financial perspective due to the results of the Pork division. Internal restructuring is planned.
Vion initiated its new strategy ‘Building Balanced Chains’ in 2019. The objective of this strategy is to enable Vion to develop sustainable chains that contribute to a healthy food supply. 2019 was a good year from a financial perspective due to the results of the Pork division, with good margins in Europe and increased demand in Asia, from which Vion benefited due to its excellent shipping infrastructure to Asia.
In 2020, on the basis of its new ‘Building Balanced Chains’ strategy, the company will continue to intensively work on building new chains in the Netherlands and Germany. This is of key importance for all agricultural entrepreneurs and chain partners. Furthermore, the firm will be restructuring the organisation from three divisions to four business units: Pork, Beef, Food Service and Retail. The Retail business unit is new and will focus on innovations, plant-based protein and meat products for retail customers. The strategy’s implementation is supported by targeted communications, culture and leadership programmes, together with the associated ICT solutions.
The coronavirus (COVID-19) is creating major uncertainties in 2020. In supplying food products, Vion plays a critical role in the continuity of society’s food supply. The corona crisis has created a major change in consumption patterns; people are no longer eating out, but are eating at home. The sale of meat to restaurants and hotels has come to a standstill, while deliveries to supermarkets have significantly increased. The turnover of convenience meat products, such as minced meat, is increasing in comparison to more luxurious products.
These shifts have a major impact on the valorisation of meat, causing the relationship between purchase and selling prices to shift as well. The safety of our employees has the highest possible priority, while we are doing everything in our power to responsibly continue production. Vion plays an essential role in supplying food to society and is working in close cooperation with governments in the Netherlands and Germany to keep the supply of food up to par during this crisis.
Due to the coronavirus, the infrastructure in Asia has become difficult for pork exports. Yet, Asia continues to offer opportunities in 2020, in part due to the persistent African swine fever outbreak there. This also is a potential threat in Europe, which is being monitored in close consultation with governments.