Doux chairman and founder Charles Doux has invited the French poultry group's breeders to become shareholders on condition they accept his strategic plan for the company.

A spokesman for Doux, which is in administration, confirmed the firm's chiefs had made the offer in a letter to breeders at the end of last week.

However, they did not disclose what size of stake they are willing to give up. The Doux family controls 80% of the group's capital.

In the letter, the Doux's said they would also be making proposals to settle payments due to breeders.

The proposals focus on paying 50% of the amounts due by 30 September provided a court agrees to extend Doux's period in administration from 30 July to 31 December. A hearing is scheduled for 27 July.

The spokesman declined to comment on reports Mr Doux had described the value of one the bidding consortia's offer for the group as "derisory" and which would lead to "a significant decrease in production".

"Mr (Charles) Doux was very shocked by the standard of the bids and in particular, the social aspect, provision being made for too many redundancies. For this
reason, he is working on the continuation plan," the spokesman added.