Alliance Group has signed an agreement with Grand Farm at a ceremony in China as the companies seek to strengthen their partnership.
Alliance Group chief executive David Surveyor, who is part of New Zealand Prime Minister Rt. Hon John Key’s business delegation to the country, signed the agreement in Beijing on 19 April alongside Grand Farm President Mr Xibin Chen.
“This agreement, which signals further strategic co-operation between Alliance Group and Grand Farm, sets out a robust plan to improve the returns and add value to both businesses,” says Surveyor.
“This programme will include significant brand development, a one-to-one exclusive arrangement on all sheepmeat and venison for our Pure South brand and provide opportunities to expand and incorporate beef.”
The companies also plan to create new product forms and ranges that will be either produced from source or further processed in the market such as retail packs and product forms to meet the growing demands of China’s food service sector, he says.
“We will also collectively seek new investment opportunities in areas such as technology and advanced product forms including research and development.
“The focus is now about capturing more market value for our 5,000 farmer-shareholders by understanding consumer tastes and getting better at matching our products and markets and investing more in new product development and packaging.”
Chen says: “Alliance Group and Grand Farm have a strong and enduring business relationship, which spans 17 years. This agreement will improve this partnership and enhance our economic and cultural communication.”
Alliance Group will launch a new range of market-ready co-branded Pure South-Grand Farm lamb products for the retail and food service sectors in China in June.
The cooperative has increased the volume of exports to China by 35 per cent over the past five years. Alliance is also exporting New Zealand venison to China.
Grand Farm owns 96 meat shops, operates 260 branded meat counters in selected hypermarkets and supplies over 1000 hypermarkets in China.
Alliance Group has been working in China since the mid-1990s and is now the country’s largest exporter of New Zealand lamb to the country. The co-operative began exporting to traders in Dalian in the mid-1990s and has been working with Grand Farm since 2000. Grand Farm is the best known distributor and marketer of top quality red meat in Northern China.