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Retailers and food groups are feeling the impact of the current civil unrest in Egypt, which reached a high-point today (1 February) with marches all over the country.

The anti-government protests have led to the closure of Carrefour‘s seven outlets in Egypt – four hypermarkets and three supermarkets – which are run by its franchisee, Majid Al Fettain, a spokesman for the group told just-food. Only one of these outlets has suffered damage, the spokesman added.

Meanwhile, French dairy group Lactalis, has said that production at its four plants in the vicinity of Cairo, three making cheese and the other producing yoghurts and yoghurt drinks, has been affected intermittently since last Friday.

“The curfews in place makes it difficult for staff to keep working day hours and these restrictions also disrupt deliveries in and out of the plant and the distribution of finished goods,” a Lactalis official explained.   

“Yesterday, Monday, these plants were operating partially but, given the major demonstrations taking place today and the general strike call, they are likely to be seriously hit but we don’t have confirmation of this.”

Some of Lactalis’s French and European staff have returned home, while others have stayed. “At the moment, we are not worried about the security at the plants which have not been subjected to vandalism or pillaging,” the official added.   

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Meanwhile, a Danone spokesperson told just-food that its fresh dairy products plant on the outskirts of Cairo, which turns out brands such as Activia and Danette, has been closed since last Friday. “We do not have an update on the situation at the plant today.”  It also has a distribution-only operation for baby food in Egypt.