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Lamb Weston / Meijer partners with Belaya Dacha to serve the Russian market with frozen potato products

Lamb Weston / Meijer partners with Belaya Dacha to serve the Russian market with frozen potato products

Aim of the newly created Joint Venture is to invest in a new French fry plant in Lipetsk in order to support key customers in the rapidly growing Russian (foodservice) market with french fries.

June 28, 2016
Lamb Weston / Meijer, a partnership between US-based ConAgra Foods Lamb Weston and Netherlands-based Meijer Frozen Food, announced that they have signed an agreement with the Russian company Belaya Dacha to establish a new joint venture partnership to serve the Russian market.

The deal is subject to FAS (Federal Anti-monopoly Service) approval.

The agreement was signed by Bas Alblas, CEO of Lamb Weston / Meijer, and Victor Semenov, Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Belaya Dacha. Aim of the newly created Joint Venture is to invest in a new French fry plant in Lipetsk in order to support key customers in the rapidly growing Russian market.

Bas Alblas, CEO Lamb Weston / Meijer:

“Our new Joint Venture will provide us with a unique opportunity to expand our position in the Russian market, while supporting our international key clients in optimising their own value chain, growing their businesses in the region and meeting local needs.”
This close collaboration enables Lamb Weston / Meijer and Belaya Dacha to combine their complementary knowledge and skills.

Victor Semenov, Co-owner and Chairman of Belaya Dacha:

“Both companies benefit from each other’s unique knowledge, skills and expertise. We can take advantage of Lamb Weston / Meijer’s in-depth experience in potato growing and high quality French fry production, while leveraging Belaya Dacha‘s experience in the Russian quick service and retail market and our own construction division.”
In the Joint Venture, the international frozen potato processing company Lamb Weston / Meijer cooperates with the Russian Group of Companies Belaya Dacha. Belaya Dacha will be the majority shareholder in this Joint Venture.

To secure potato supply, the Joint Venture will make use of its own farm in the Tambov region and will work closely together with dedicated Russian farmers.

Greg Schlafer, President, Lamb Weston:

“Lamb Weston leverages its well-established dual sourcing model to supply customers in North America and Europe.”

“This new partnership between Lamb Weston / Meijer and Belaya Dacha will allow our partners at Lamb Weston / Meijer to serve our customers expanding in the growing Russian market.”

First French fry factory in Russia

The newly created partnership will, at close, invest in a new french fry manufacturing facility in Lipetsk, a special economic zone situated 450 km (280 miles) south of Moscow. The new factory will be the first French fry factory in Russia. Construction is planned to begin mid-2016, with production starting in early 2018.

The total investment for this new factory is over EUR 100 million. This project will be financed with equity and long-term financing from Sberbank, one of the largest financial institutes in Russia. The start of the construction is planned by mid-2016 and production is projected to start early 2018.

The French fry plant with a production capacity of 90,000 tons per year, will be supplied by the JV's own farm in the Tambov region and will work closely together with a dedicated network of Russian farmers.

Growing global demand for frozen french fries

Worldwide demand for frozen french fries continues to increase, and Euromonitor predicts that the frozen potato category will grow 2.6 billion pounds by 2020.

Recently, Lamb Weston announced its plans to expand operations in Richland, Washington, adding a new french fry line to allow them to meet growing global demand.

A frozen potato industry leader, Lamb Weston operates, directly and with its partners, 22 manufacturing facilities in North America, Europe and China.
Companies in this Article
ConAgra Foods is a "leading branded, value-added" food company, organized into three businesses—Consumer Foods, International Foods and Commercial Products, which includes our Food and Ingredients and Trading and Merchandising Segments.
JSC Belaya Dacha Trading produces and markets fresh-cut, ready-to-eat packaged salads and peeled vegetables.
Lamb Weston / Meijer is one of the larger manufacturer of French Fries and Potato specialties in Europe.