Cargill buys UK feed formulation software firm

By Jane Byrne

- Last updated on GMT

Feed formulation firm buy underscores Cargill animal nutrition growth strategy [pic: (c)]
Feed formulation firm buy underscores Cargill animal nutrition growth strategy [pic: (c)]

Related tags Nutrition Cargill

US agribusiness giant, Cargill, in a continued drive to expand its animal nutrition business, has acquired UK feed and food formulation technology provider, Format International.

The Minneapolis based group said the Woking, England headquartered software developer will be integrated into its Cargill Feed Management Systems (FMS), a company that operates as a separate part of the Cargill Animal Nutrition business.

Cargill is not disclosing the financial terms of the deal.

Format has 5,000 users across 93 countries. It designs authors and markets recipe optimization, ingredient allocation and food and feed formulation solutions for the animal feed, aqua feed, premix, pet food, and human food.

In May this year, Cargill told FeedNavigator how it has been helping integrated pork producers meet productivity gains​ and how it has fined tuned a feed mill’s phytase use though leveraging its formulation system based on mathematical modelling and ‘big data’.

On the asset trail

The acquisition of Format International follows Cargill’s move into new feed areas through acquisition and joint ventures in 2015. This year has also seen the group offload some meat operations.

In October, it confirmed the finalization of the deal to acquire Norway-based salmon feed company EWOS for about $1.5b from Altor Fund and Bain Capital Europe. There is talk the company may move into farming fish itself as well down the road.

July saw Cargill form a joint venture with shrimp producer, Naturisa, to build a $30 million shrimp feed facility near Guayaquil in Ecuador.

In May, the US company acquired a majority stake in a leading premix and feed additive player in the Turkish market, Ekol Gida.

“We knew Ekol Gida to be a respected provider of premixes and feed additives in the Turkish market. As we evaluated ways of expanding our presence in the market, its name kept surfacing as a top company with which to partner.

We did not have a commercial relationship with the firm when we began our conversations with them. But we have clearly recognized synergies between the two companies and are confident that together we can deliver valued nutritional solutions to the Turkish market,”​ Mark Poeschl, VP and group director of Cargill’s animal nutrition business, told us back then.

He said the operation will leverage the Turkish company’s established customer network in premixes and feed additives as well as its deep market knowledge.

And Poeschl said the deal was very much aligned with Cargill’s animal nutrition business’ growth strategy.

Cargill also sold its US pork business to JBS for $1.45 bn in July this year. That deal included the sale of two Midwest meat processing plants, five feed mills and four hog farms.

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