Jordan Family now Lead Shareholders as European Oat Millers targets further growth

Two of the shareholders of European Oat Millers, David and Bill Jordan, have acquired the shares of the company’s chairman Moez Karsan and his wife Naseem Karsan. This gives the two Jordan brothers majority ownership of the business as it embarks on the next phase of its development.

European Oat Millers

European Oat Millers

Founded by the Karsan and Jordan families 30 years ago, European Oat Millers has grown to be the second largest oat miller in Europe in terms of capacity and the largest in terms of b2b market share. Moez and Naseem Karsan managed the company on behalf of the shareholders until 2012, when Alk Brand was appointed as Managing Director.

The Bedford-based company supplies oats and other grain based ingredients to most of the major producers of porridges, muesli, granola and other oat products such as biscuits. The company also operates a world class retail cereal plant producing private label breakfast cereals such as flakes, extruded products and granolas to many of the top retailers in the UK and Europe.

The deal with the Jordan brothers is the latest in a business relationship which dates back to Moez Karsan joining Jordan’s Cereals in the 1980s to help it to introduce the first granola bars into the UK market before the Jordan family sold Jordan’s Cereals to ABF in 2008. Moez and Bill will continue to work together promoting their passion for bio-diversity through the Conservation Grade programme.

“I’m delighted that David and Bill wanted to buy my stake in this great business,” said Moez. “It cements a friendship that has lasted for over 30 years and I know the company will go from strength to strength under their stewardship. After dedicating most of my life to growing European Oat Millers to the sizeable business it is today we have decided to focus our time on other pursuits and family interests.”

Commented Bill Jordan: “The contribution Moez has made to this sector and to European Oat Millers in particular cannot be underestimated. We wish him and his wife an extremely long and happy future. The greatest testament to his achievement will be the continued growth and prosperity of this business, to which we and the management team are dedicated.

“The new European Oat Millers Board will be backing our management team with an investment programme aimed to create substantial additional capacity in our milling business. European Oat Millers will continue to invest to make sure we keep delighting our customers with world class technical and service standards and to help the company to keep expanding its horizons.”

Operating from three sites in Bedford, European Oat Millers employs 150 people and has grown rapidly in recent years with a particular emphasis on export markets. The company has recently joined The Sunday Times International Track 200 league table, highlighted for its export growth over a two-year period which includes exporting globally to markets including India, China and South Africa.

Managing director Alk Brand, who joined the business with a successful track record in grain processing, is bullish about its prospects. “We are seeing sustained growth in export and domestic markets, reflecting the increasing popularity of oats as an ingredient among manufacturers and consumers,” he said. “We are proud to supply blue chip food manufacturers and retailers from our production facilities and will continue to support our customers through investment in innovation and expansion.”

EuroTier 2012: Jules Tournut Probiotics Prize

On November 13th 2012, at EUROTIER tradeshow, The European Probiotic Association (EPA) awarded the Jules Tournut Probiotics Prize 2012 to Peter de Schryver, from Ghent University, for his innovative research project on the use of microbial products and microorganisms in animal nutrition. The Prize was awarded in presence of members of the EPA, FEFANA, representative of the EPA Scientific Committee and journalists. Altogether, the quality and diversity of research projects submitted demonstrate that probiotics benefits go beyond zootechnical performance and pave the way for innovative applications in the field of immunity, but also stress management or even reproduction.

From left to right : J. Brufau (EPA Scientific Committee), E. Auclair (EPA Treasurer), P. de Schryver and L. Dussert (EPA President). 

The aim of the EPA Jules Tournut Prize is to support research and innovation in the field of probiotics for animal nutrition. Professor Joaquim Brufau, from IRTA, who represented EPA Scientific Committee, which formed the judging panel of the award, highlighted the scientific quality and diversity of applications explored by the candidates, who came from all over the world, beyond the boundary of Europe. The studies submitted covered a range of target species and benefits, sign of the broad potential of probiotics for sustainable animal production.

Peter de Schryver’s project aimed at improving performance and welfare in aquaculture thanks to an original approach: the use of poly-β- hydroxybutyrate (PHB), which he describes as a microbial energy storage polymer, an important source of energy for bacteria. PHB thus appears to play a prebiotic role in aquatic species, resulting in improved performance and resistance to pathogens. By combining this compound to a probiotic bacteria (synbiotic approach), the young researcher showed that both agents had a synergistic effect to protect fish against pathogens (use of Artemia franciscana as a well-studied model of aquaculture specie).

Nevertheless, when asked if this new approach could be applied to various species Peter de Schryver reckons that “it could certainly work in land farmed animals that have an even more developed digestive system”. The use of PHB in synbiotic approach for animal nutrition thus appears as a promising field.

Moreover, the young researcher is convinced that, especially in aquaculture, the digestive microbiota is often underestimated. Another interesting aspect of his study is that he looked into the Artemia microbiota richness and diversity and found that PHB had a positive effect on the microbiota diversity and evenness, an asset for microflora stability and protection against pathogens

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EU Opens the Door to Syngenta Corn

The U.S. Grains Council is pleased to learn of the official approval of the Syngenta corn variety MIR 162 Agrisure Vipterra in the European Union, opening the way for exports of U.S. corn co-products, including distiller’s dried grains with solubles (DDGS) and corn gluten feed (CGF). The long-delayed decision came after years of industry leadership and efforts, especially those partners of the Council in the EU, including COCERAL, a grain trade association, FEFAC, a feed millers association, and the Irish Feed Millers Association.

“This approval is a great success as it opens the window of opportunity for U.S. products, including DDGS and CGF, to enter the EU market. This is especially attractive in big markets like Ireland, Spain, Portugal and the Netherlands. Their ability to import these high-protein feed ingredients is critical at a time of crop shortage in Europe and high prices. Everyone is looking for alternatives,” said Cary Sifferath, USGC senior regional director based in Tunis.

Sifferath noted, however, the opportunity may only exist for a limited amount of time as new crop biotech events coming down the pipeline are not yet approved in Europe. Such products may be planted by U.S. farmers in the spring, meaning they may enter the market in the fall of 2013. This could again stall sales of U.S. co-products into the EU provided the approval process remains sluggish within the trade bloc.
“Corn co-products are a tremendous feed ingredient recognized as a good value by buyers within Europe and around the world,” Sifferath said. “Approvals such as this help livestock and poultry producers manage costs and expand options, and we are hopeful the availability of these options continue well into the future.”

FEFANA and EPA Join Forces in Probiotics Pursuit

FEFANA and EPA have established a cooperation agreement to collaborate for the promotion of probiotics for animal nutrition. The two associations have recently joined their forces with the aim to generate, develop and share their expertise and information on probiotics with feed chain stakeholders.

FEFANA is the EU Association of Specialty Feed Ingredients and their Mixtures while EPA has been created to specifically support the generic promotion of probiotics in feed. Through several initiatives they inform and update the scientific communities, nutritionists and the relevant industries about the benefits of probiotics in animal nutrition.

While FEFANA’s activites are mainly focused on regulatory aspects impacting the specialty feed ingredients industry; this joining of forces will strengthen promotion of probiotics toward the feed chain partners which is a major incentive. The main ambition of this joint group is to better position the probiotics in the national, European and International arena as a pivotal source of information and thanks to combining their activities, this position is strengthened.

The joint group will work on a series of communication activities along the year on topics already identified and related to subjects perceived as important and/or innovative for probiotics information on which you will be able to find on their newly designed website once it has been built. in the near future.

The traditional Jules Tournut Probiotic Prize, created by EPA in 1999, will also be granted in November 2012 during the Eurotier in Hannover, Germany, to reward researchers for their innovative works in the field of probiotics in animal nutrition.

The joint group will operate within the FEFANA structure and make sure that their activities fit to the Specialty Feed Ingredients Industry overall objectives. Gérard Bertin, EPA Secretary General, will take care of the management of this joint group, with support and involvement of the FEFANA staff.

Will you be attending Eurotier 2012? Visit for www.eurotier.com information.

www.fefana.org

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