The Norwegian salmon feed production landscape changed with the entry of salmon farmer, Marine Harvest, into the feed game in 2014. Nutreco restructured its business to compensate.
“Our aqua feed business was impacted by lower sales in Norway as a result of the smaller accessible market, as anticipated. Nevertheless, we retained our leading position in salmonid feed, underscoring our capability in developing innovative feed products for the most advanced species,” said Nutreco spokesperson Mark Woldberg.
In terms of its shrimp feed segment, the Dutch group said Ecuador reported strong organic growth.
Nutreco, which delisted from the Amsterdam stock exchange in April last year following its takeover by SHV, reported overall business net revenues of €5.7bn (USD$6.5bn), which was a jump on the €5.3bn achieved in 2014.
It posted an operating result of €282m, again up on the €236m figure recorded in 2014, while noting contributions of both positive currency effects and its acquisitions in Brazil to the group's overall financial performance.
December 2014 saw it acquire two Brazil based firms - Fatec, a producer of premixes and animal health products for broilers, layers, swine and dairy cows, and BRNova, a producer of premixes and feed specialties, mainly for poultry and swine.
Animal nutrition results
The company said its Trouw Nutrition division proved robust despite difficult market circumstances in the global swine and dairy sectors.
“2015 was in many ways a special year for Nutreco. The financial results were very good across all of our businesses. With the acquisition of US-based trace mineral producer Micronutrients we realised the third-largest acquisition in our history, making Nutreco the category leader in a specific feed additive segment," Knut Nesse, CEO of Nutreco.
“Our animal nutrition segment had positive volume growth and a more favorable product mix. These developments were driven by good performance in both growth geographies and mature markets, as well as in certain product categories such as young animal feed and feed additives.
Regarding the Iberian segment, we strengthened our position in the accessible market for compound feed in 2015,” Woldberg told us.
The Iberian business was reportedly able to capitalize on the recovering Spanish economy, with Nutreco's compound feed operations in Spain and Portugal, Nanta, reporting a hike in volumes sold to third-parties.
It also said its Spanish poultry arm, Sada, benefited from good sales last summer.
Speaking to this publication last year, Nesse said Nutreco had found new clients for Sada following on from the loss of a supply contract it had with supermarket chain, Mercadona – the retailer had rejected new pricing arrangements.
He also confirmed back then Nutreco’s intentions to retain all of its Iberian assets. It had put the division up for sale in 2014 but scrapped the divestment process after talks with several potential buyers did not deliver.
Four companies supply half of the global premix market: DSM, Nutreco’s Trouw Nutrition, Cargill’s Provimi and InVivo/Evialis. The rest of the market is supplied by a large number of local producers. Trouw Nutrition holds the No 2 position in the global premix industry, with a market share of around 12%, according to Nutreco’s data.
The markets for preventive animal health products and feed additives are fragmented, it said.
The top three salmonid feed producers in the free market – Skretting, Cargill/EWOS, and BioMar – together account for close to 90% of the total global unintegrated salmonid feed market, with Skretting said to be the biggest.
Most of the world’s shrimp feed is produced in China, Thailand, Ecuador, India, Indonesia and Vietnam. Skretting is the world’s third-largest shrimp feed producer, reported Nutreco. The other major producers are Charoen Pokphand Foods (CPF), Ewos/Cargill, Guangdong Evergreen Group, Guangdong Haid Group and Guangdong Yuehai Feed Group.