Ulster Unionist Leader Robin Swann has welcomed the acquisition of Moy Park for $1.3bn, but has called on the new owners to confirm their lasting commitment to Northern Ireland.
Robin Swann said:
“Moy Park is Northern Ireland’s largest employer with over 6,000 workers. It’s global growth and reach is phenomenal, especially considering its modest beginnings at the height of the Second World War in Moygashel. It truly is one of Northern Ireland’s best business success stories.
“I hope this sale will strengthen Moy Park’s place as one of the globe’s most respected food businesses.
“As a North Antrim MLA, a constituency with a major Moy Park presence with a factory in Ballymena and significant numbers of bird growers and breeders, this decision will be particularly welcomed locally. It had been a concern for some that the company may have been acquired by a firm that neither had the experience of processing chickens nor really understood how the global poultry market worked. Thankfully those concerns have not come to fruition as Pilgrim’s are one of the leading producers of poultry meat in the world.
“With Brexit coming around the corner, this is a strong vote of confidence in the strength of the local market that a Brazilian owned company has decided to use a Northern Ireland as a gateway into the lucrative UK and European markets.
“I hope that the new owners will now quickly outline their plans for Moy Park and reaffirm its important commitment to Northern Ireland.”