ADM strengthens position in global malt market

By Anthony Fletcher

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Brewing Adm

ADM's purchase of French firm Lesaffre's 50 per cent interest in
International Malting Company (IMC) strengthens the ingredient
giant's position in the global malt business.

The deal makes IMC a wholly-owned subsidiary of ADM, and further emphasises the global reach and depth of the Illinois-based company.

ADM reported net sales for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2006 of $36.6 billion.

IMC was originally created as a joint venture in 1998 by ADM and Lesaffre. It has grown to become one of the worlds largest suppliers of malt to the brewing, distilling and food industries.

IMC operates malt plants in Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the United States.

"ADM looks forward to making the transition as seamless as possible for both its customers and employees,"​ said IMC president Steven Furcich.

"Going forward, customers can continue to expect the same high level of quality, service and innovation from IMC."

Barley malt, which contains natural sugars, can be found in a wide range of foods, including breakfast cereals, beverages and bakery goods. It is the basic, fermentable ingredient in beer.

The ingredient is increasingly being used to add nutritional value to products, such as cereal bars. According to Mintel, US sales alone topped $2.2 billion in 2004, excluding sales through Wal-Mart and natural food stores.

"Lesaffre's malt business has been an important part of our family and company tradition,"​ said Patrick Lesaffre, member and vice chairman of Lesaffre's supervisory board.

"I am confident that ADM will maintain the quality and service that IMC is known for, and continue its close association with the brewing industry around the world."

Lesaffre, headquartered in Lille, France, is also a strong player in the production and sale of bakers yeast and other yeast products. Yeast is used extensively in brewing and is also widely used in the food industry because of its taste contribution, which can impart a meaty bouillon taste to a wide variety of products.

This is derived from the yeast's amino acid and peptide complex. The ingredient is used for bread production, beer fermentation, and also wine fermentation, and the global yeast market is now worth around €1.17 billion.

This market is growing on the back of increasing demand for natural ingredients in processed foods.

ADM and Lesaffre Yeast Corporation will continue their cooperation in the Red Star Yeast Company joint venture.

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