July 26, 2013
Since March 2013, Tyson Brazil, a subsidiary of Tyson Foods, has been exporting green chicken from its Brazilian unit to Saudi Arabia.
According to a news agency, green chickens are raised without animal protein in its diet or in the treatment of diseases and started being produced by the company earlier this year in partnership with Gallus Avícola, a hatchery in the state of Santa Catarina.
"Production comes from 50 integrated producers in Taió region, hired by the partner, and is turned to Saudi Arabia, opening a new market for Tyson's Brazilian operations," said Tyson Brazil export manager José Charl Noujaim. Saudi Arabia, according to Tyson, is the only buyer of green chicken. The product is shipped following the same specifications as the conventional one, in terms of cuts, with bones or boneless, in different presentations, to meet retail and food service industry needs.
In production of green chicken, Gallus is responsible for the supply of chicks, feed, technical assistance and logistics. Poultry farmers provide the structure of their farms and manpower for production. Tyson Brazil, in turn, slaughters and processes the birds at its Itaiópolis unit, also in the state of Santa Catarina. According to the company, it is responsible for quality standards and marketing of chicken on the foreign market.
Of the chicken Tyson Brazil exports, 35% goes to the Middle East and North Africa (Mena). "Exports to the region are very important for the company," said Noujaim. Tyson entered the Brazilian market in 2008, and has been supplying the Arab market since then. Despite not disclosing figures, the company informs that with the qualification of new plants for export, the volumes shipped to the MENA region grew significantly.
The products that Tyson Brazil exports, in general, have varied cuts ranging from breasts, legs, wings, feet and raw material for industry to gut and feather meal. To the Middle East, however, the main cuts exported for retail, in trays, are breast, thighs and wings. For the food service sector, packages are mostly two to five kilogramme pots, and to industry, the product shipped is mostly 7.5-kilogramme packages of boneless whole chicken called "Shawarma", and giblets like liver and gizzards.
According to Noujaim, entry into the Brazilian poultry market was a strategic step for Tyson Foods' international area in search for expansion in nations that are large producers, exporters and consumers of poultry. By operating in the country, says the manager, the company gained the opportunity to export to markets to which it had limited access.
The company entered Brazil with the purchase of three chicken units, two in Santa Catarina and one in Paraná. In 2008, Tyson acquired the Macedo Agroindustrial plants in the city of São José, in Santa Catarina, Avícola Itaiópolis (Avita), in Itaiópolis, also Santa Catarina state, and Frangobras, in Campo Mourao, Parana.
From Brazil the company serves customers in over 130 countries. The units are certified to export a wide range of cuts to markets like Europe, Africa, Asia, South America, the Caribbean and the Middle East. Tyson Brazil is also certified and meets the requirements for halal chicken slaughter and production, where all processes follow Islamic rules.
In Brazil, the company has 4,500 employees and operates in an integrated system, in which it provides chicks, feed, veterinary care and technical guidance to farmers, who raise the chickens on their properties and then sell them to Tyson. The company trades brands Tyson and Macedo.