Bord Bia signs ‘lucrative’ agreement with Wyeth Nutrition in China

A “lucrative” Memorandum of Understanding with Wyeth China has been signed by the CEO of Bord Bia, Tara McCarthy.

The memorandum was signed today (Tuesday, November 6), as the state agency, along with 12 Irish food companies, pushed for an increased foothold in China at the CIIE (Chinese Import and Export Expo) in Shanghai.

It is anticipated that more memos of understanding will also be signed by a number of the companies participating at the event in the coming days.

The value of the Wyeth agreement to the Irish dairy industry is estimated at €110 million annually.

Wyeth is a major strategic partner of Ireland in China and accounts for around €350 million of the dairy exports to China which amounted to €666.4 million in 2017.

China is Ireland’s second most important market for dairy exports.

The Memorandum of Understanding with Wyeth is a commitment by the company to source all of its dairy ingredients for its Illuma base brand exclusively from milk from Irish farms participating in Bord Bia’s Sustainable Dairy Assurance Scheme.

The scheme is part of the Origin Green programme, Ireland’s national food and drink sustainability programme, the only such programme operating on a national basis in the world.

Wyeth and Bord Bia also agreed to share consumer and market insight on the Chinese market.

The Chinese-based company has also agreed to undertake awareness raising around Ireland and its sustainably produced food offering and to work with Ireland on research and development.

Speaking at the signing event, McCarthy said: “This agreement is very good news for the Irish dairy industry and a vote of confidence in the Irish food sector by one of its strategic partners committed to working with us on sharing insights on Chinese consumers and building awareness of Ireland’s premium food offering in the market.”