French President François Hollande has called for complete transparency on Doux’s history and the reasons for its fall. Hollande sees food production might be one of the key solutions to aiding France’s economic recovery. Hollande met Doux employees and trade union delegates when visiting Space on Tuesday.
The day before, Commercial court of Quimper (Brittany) issued its decision regarding Doux’s dismantling of its fresh products branch. Elaborate and export branches of the business will continue for the moment.
The fresh products branch employed 1,715, but only 745 only will keep their jobs. Three slaughterhouses will close: Graincourt (north of France), La Vraie Croix (Brittany), and Le Pontet (South East). Others slaughterhouses have avoided closure. Serent and Laval will go to French poultry leader LDC. Doux subsidiary, Galina, will keep Pleucadeuc, much to the surprise of all the others parties. Boyne (poultry slaughterhouse) and Amily (hatchery) are now part of a joint venture between Glon Sanders and Duc, Blancafort (turkey slaughterhouse) and Clémont (feed plant) are now owned by Glon Sanders. Commercial court favored this solution to insure as much as coherence as possible: the last four plants, which represent a complete chain, are in the same region.
Philippe Tillous-Bordes (Glon Sanders CEO), Jean-Philippe Puig (Sofiprotéol director, Sofiprotéeol being the parent company of Glon Sanders) and Eric Philippe (Glon Sanders director) said that Glon Sanders has a strong position in industry and catering and that the new plants will present the group with opportunities to enter supermarkets with Duc expertise. JV is not yet linked to absorption of Duc group by Glon Sanders, but discussions are under way.
Eric Philippe said that Glon Sanders already exports 30% of its poultry production and that the new plants might also help Brittany’s produce find markets in eastern and southern France and maybe even abroad.
The main question now is: will Glon Sanders be able to find poultry and turkey producers? In France, contract’s 3 points (guarantee upon chick price, feed price and energy costs) link farmer and production organisers (either feed, slaughterhouse or coop). Other operators like LDC have already signed contracts with several farmers near those plants. But Glon Sanders group is optimistic: “We’ve got a very good relationship with farmers in Brittany, our original region.” And the group, who have already sent teams to diagnose very precisely the state of the plants, will shortly report the amount of investment to insure technical and economic efficiency of the plants.
“Regarding brand, the commercial court has given us an exclusive use of the Pere Dodu brand in all fresh products, even if Doux keeps the brand for elaborates.” Tillous-Bordes said the group has decided on a trial period of two years to see if it may develop the brand.