First announced in March this year, the sale of Meat and Livestock Commercial Services Limited (MLCSL) to Hallmark Veterinary Compliance Services MLCSL, was in response to a challenging business environment and the need to respond to new technology classification systems, such as VIA.
The AHDB said it hoped the sale would help secure the long-term future of independent, manual, carcase classification services in Great Britain.
Moving into the private sector
The levy board believes that by moving the business into the private sector with a company that has a strong track record of delivering independent services to the meat industry, it will open up opportunities for greater efficiencies and synergies that would not be possible under the current public ownership model and secure the future of the business.
According to the AHDB, a year-long process was undertaken to identify suitable companies that met robust criteria set down by its board, including value for money, track record of delivering independent verification services to the meat industry and commitment to the long-term future of the business.
Trade body concern
No job losses are anticipated as part of the change of ownership, however trade bodies from the meat industry expressed concern over moving it into the private sector.
AHDB chief executive Jane King said: “A lot of work has been going on behind the scenes by all concerned and we are now moving towards the end of the sale process. We have listened to feedback from industry and approved the creation of an industry-led oversight committee to monitor the independence of the business after the sale is completed.
“We are now awaiting official confirmation that the sale can go ahead. I would like to thank all MLCSL staff for their professionalism and patience while this process has been ongoing.”