Louis Dreyfus Co. B.V. (LDC), The Netherlands, announced plans to exit the dairy business by mid-2019.

The move is in line with the company’s strategy to exit non-core areas and re-focus on its core businesses, including investments in origination markets and expansion along the value chain.

“LDC’s dairy platform was identified as non-core in 2017 due to its lack of critical mass within the company’s portfolio,” says Federico Cerisoli, chief financial officer. “The business accounted for roughly 1% of our revenues in 2018 and demanded substantial working capital resources. LDC has been evaluating the best way to exit the business, either through an orderly wind down or a sale to potential buyers; these efforts are continuing and an exit will be implemented by the middle of this year. The exit will have practically no impact on our global sales, which continue to grow overall, and is expected to have a slight positive effect on our working capital from 2019 onwards.”

“We worked hard to separate the business from the rest of LDC’s portfolio, and will be working equally hard with our customers and suppliers over the coming months to ensure a smooth exit by mid-2019,” says Jean-Marc Foucher, head of LDC’s dairy platform. “Following the exit, LDC’s only exposure to dairy will be a non-controlling stake in a dairy processing plant in Australia, operated by a joint venture partner.”

LDC has been in the dairy business since 2009, originating from key suppliers in North America, Europe, Oceania and South America. It delivers mainly milk powders, lactose and whey products to Asia, Mexico, North America the Middle East and Africa.