Hassad Food plans $68m poultry project


Reuters | 5 November 2009

Hassad Food, owned by Qatar's sovereign wealth fund, plans to develop a $68.5 million poultry project with Oman's A'Saffa Poultry to secure food supplies in the Gulf state, A'Saffa's chief executive said.

"The farm will begin operation in about 24-30 months time and will be able to produce about 20 percent of Qatar's poultry needs," said Nasser Al Maully.

Once completed, the 30 sq km farm located at the southern end of the country will produce up to 17,000 tonnes of broiler meat and 90 million eggs annually, he said.

This week a deal was signed between the two companies, whereby A'Saffa would be the project's consultant.

"This is one of the steps by which we are hoping to secure food supplies in the Gulf region and rely less on imports," Al Maully said.

Profits from the project will only be made after four years, he added.

Gulf countries, heavily reliant on food imports, have been snapping up farmland and food companies in developing nations to ensure food security.

In August, Hassad Food said it had plans to develop the agricultural sector in Qatar, which has a population of 1.4 million in addition to acquiring stakes in foreign food companies.

The firm also aims to conclude as many as six deals by year end, including in Latin America and is scouting Africa to set up joint ventures or buy firms to develop land.
Original source: Reuters

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