Senoble is to pull out of its joint venture Senagral

Senoble is to pull out of its joint venture Senagral

Dairy group Senoble is poised to relinquish a 49% stake in Senagral, a joint venture with Agrial, leaving the French co-operative as the sole shareholder.

Senagral was founded in 2012 after Senoble sold 50% of its retail own-label yogurts and fresh dairy products business to Agrial.

Senoble chairman Marc Senoble said the decision to withdraw "reflects the pursuit of its strategy to gradually pull out of an activity which has been loss-making for the past five years."

The venture operates from four of Senoble's plants producing yoghurts and fromages blanc under private labels for the French market. On launch, its annual turnover was estimated at around EUR300m (US$382m).

Senoble said it would now "dedicate itself even more strongly" developing its branded and own-label desserts business.

Senoble will operate from its two remaining sites in France, in La Rochelle and Boulogne-sur-Mer, as well as six plants located elsewhere in Europe.

The company would step up its presence in the upmarket desserts segment where both organic and external growth opportunities were under consideration, it added.