AHDB raises £1.3m from carcass classification service sale

AHDB has raised £1.3m by selling its commercial subsidiary which provides carcass classification services in more than 40 red meat abattoirs.

Meat and Livestock Commercial Services Limited (MLCSL) has been bought by Hallmark Veterinary Compliance Services, through its parent company Vorenta.

The cash raised through the sale will be used to support AHDB’s work on behalf of pork, beef and lamb producers, with the sector boards deciding how the money should be allocated.

See also: AHDB in talks to privatise carcass classification arm

Details of a proposed deal first emerged in March, when AHDB revealed it had identified Hallmark as the best buyer for the company after a year-long search.

The decision to offload the company was in response to a challenging business environment and the need to respond to new technology classification systems such as video imaging analysis, said AHDB.

Greater efficiencies 

Hallmark already supplies independent services to the abattoir sector, so it is anticipated the move will open up opportunities for greater efficiencies and synergies.

Jane King, AHDB chief executive, said: “We believe this move will safeguard the long-term future of independent, manual, carcass classification services in Great Britain.

“A lot of hard work has gone into this sale from a lot of people and we are pleased we have finally crossed the finishing line.”

AHDB has said there should be no disruption in services to customers as a result of the sale and no job losses are expected.

David Peace, chairman of Hallmark, said: “We are absolutely delighted with the acquisition of MLCSL, which we believe fits very well with our current operations, to the mutual benefit of both businesses’ future development.

“MLCSL’s key strengths are its very highly experienced and loyal staff and managers, and we’re very excited about this opportunity to work together, building on MLCSL’s well-acknowledged skills, its powerful brand and expanding its services and reach.”

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