Meat & Livestock News

Minerva Acquires 16 Meat Processing Facilities from Marfrig in $1.54 Billion Deal

SÃO PAULO — In a significant consolidation within Brazil’s meat industry, Minerva Foods, a leading beef producer, has acquired 16 beef and lamb processing facilities from its competitor, Marfrig, for $1.54 billion (approximately A$2.4 billion).

The acquisition involves a mix of operational and dormant facilities located across Brazil, Argentina, Chile, and Uruguay. Most of these facilities are dedicated to cattle processing, with one in Chile specializing in lamb.

Marfrig, headquartered in São Paulo, stands as the world’s second-largest beef processor, trailing only JBS. With operations spanning 22 countries and exports reaching over 100 nations, Marfrig also holds a 51% stake in US-based National Beef and Chicken Specialist Brazil Foods (BRF).

However, in a strategic pivot, Marfrig’s recent divestitures signal its intent to retain only its larger-scale processing units in South America, focusing more on value-added meat products.

Conversely, Minerva’s acquisition underscores its expansionist approach. The deal will bolster Minerva’s daily beef processing capacity to 42,400 head, including 22,300 in Brazil, 4,500 in Uruguay, and 6,000 in Argentina.

Additionally, its lamb processing operations will surge to 25,716 head per day, spread across facilities in Australia and Chile.

Edison Ticle de Andrade, Minerva’s Chief Financial Officer, emphasized the strategic nature of the acquisition. “This initiative aligns with Minerva’s geographic diversification strategy, enhancing our presence in South America.

It not only complements our existing operations but also amplifies commercial opportunities, operational synergies, and our competitive edge in the global animal protein market,” he stated.

Payment details reveal that a portion of the deal’s cost has been settled, with the balance due upon its finalization, pending regulatory and shareholder approvals.

Minerva’s Expanding Footprint

This acquisition follows Minerva’s recent foray into Australian lamb processing and its impending purchase of NH Foods’ BPU beef processing facility in Uruguay, renowned as one of South America’s modern plants with a daily capacity of 1,200 head.

In 2021, Minerva ventured into the Australian red meat sector, acquiring two lamb processing units in Western Australia and later adding the Australian Lamb Co to its portfolio.

Industry insiders speculate that Minerva might further extend its Australian presence, with potential interest in beef processing assets, including those of Australian Meat Group, NH Foods, and Bindaree Beef.

Distinct from its Brazilian peers like JBS, Marfrig, and BRF, Minerva places a pronounced emphasis on exports.

The company’s 2016 acquisition of Independent Meat Traders, a meat trading business headquartered in Brisbane, further cements its commitment to the export market, facilitating meat sales from Australia, New Zealand, and other parts of Asia.