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38,200 hectares of beet-growing area for 2021 make it possible to continue
efficiently processing sugar beet at two sites in Austria
Vienna - Due to growing contracts concluded for 2021 covering over 38,200
hectares, the processing of sugar beet at both sugar refineries in Austria is
commercially viable. For this reason, the Supervisory Board of AGRANA
Beteiligungs-AG approved the continuing operation of the Leopoldsdorf site at
its meeting on 27.11.2020.
Erwin Hameseder, Chairman of the Supervisory Board of AGRANA Beteiligungs-AG:
"Today's resolution shows what can be achieved when key business and political
players cooperate at the provincial and national levels. We have jointly managed
to safeguard valuable jobs and regional value added. As a result of the increase
in the beet-growing area for the 2021 harvest in particular, today's resolution
by the Supervisory Board to continue operating the sugar refinery in
Leopoldsdorf is excellent news. I would like to thank everyone involved for
making this clear decision possible."
Johann Marihart, CEO of AGRANA Beteiligungs-AG:
"We are delighted that we have been able so early to agree with the beet growers
on the commitment of more than 38,000 hectares of beet-growing land which are
necessary for the commercially viable capacity utilisation of two Austrian sugar
refineries. We offer beet prices which make beet growing attractive. We have
always invested in ensuring the competitiveness of both Austrian sugar
production sites. In the past five years, these investments in Leopoldsdorf and
Tulln amounted to a total of EUR 77 million. The focus of these investments was
on energy-efficient technologies and greater efficiency in general. In a
European comparison, both sites are among the refineries with the smallest CO2
Elisabeth Köstinger, Federal Minister for Agriculture, Regions and Tourism:
"The decisive factor for me is safeguarding local sugar production and self-
sufficiency. This necessitates the site in Leopoldsdorf and the farmers who
supply it. Growing sugar beet has no longer been appealing for many farmers in
recent years. Pest-related damage, falling prices and production losses were
decisive here. Sugar production was seriously jeopardised. Nonetheless, our
farmers have managed it. In a major joint effort, we have again increased the
beet-growing area to over 38,000 hectares. As a result, these farms have laid
the foundations for maintaining the site in Leopoldsdorf. This success means
that we are not only jointly underpinning beet growing in Austria but are also
making a significant contribution to safeguarding self-sufficiency in terms of
sugar. My thanks go to AGRANA for this affirmation."
Johanna Mikl-Leitner, Lower Austrian Provincial Governor:
"Anyone who claims to support our farmers and local food production also needs
to ensure suitable conditions. Our solidarity in saving Austrian sugar relies on
a bonus for resuming growing, increased growing areas and safeguarding the
future of the Leopoldsdorf site. We owe this to our farmers, production sites
and, ultimately, the consumers who want to buy regional products from farms,
grocery stores or supermarkets."
Ernst Karpfinger, President of the Austrian Sugar Beet Growers Association:
"I am relieved by the decision reached today by the Supervisory Board. This
means that 150 jobs and the self-sufficiency of Austria in terms of domestic
sugar have been secured. My particular thanks go to the politicians whose
agreement with the farmers provides a guarantee that they will receive financial
support if they have to replant after pest infestation and also the commitment
to crop protection. I am proud of our members since their willingness to
increase the growing area is clear proof of cooperative solidarity in
challenging times. Maintaining every processing site is important when it comes
to diversified crop rotation and regional production."
Strong economic footprint
The economic footprint of AGRANA in its sugar division is considerably greater
than the jobs it creates directly. In addition to approximately 900 direct jobs
throughout Austria, there are a further 1,900 indirect jobs due to the upstream
inputs from various sectors, particularly agriculture. As a result, the direct
added value in the sugar segment amounting to EUR 80 million is more than
doubled to around EUR 180 million by means of commodity purchases as well as
downstream production and consumption-related spending.
Around 25,000 metric tonnes of sugar beet grown by Austrian contract farmers are
processed daily at the Austrian sugar refineries in Leopoldsdorf and Tulln
during campaigns spanning around four months (October to January). Besides the
refinery and administration departments, the Tulln site also houses the
centralised packaging centre with 20,000 pallet bays where all the sugar
varieties available at retail outlets in Austria under the "Wiener Zucker"
brand, as well as special varieties for our Eastern European neighbours, are
produced, packaged, stored and shipped. Sugar shipments from the Leopoldsdorf
site are mainly for the food industry and shipped using road tankers or in big
bags and sacks.
Only "Wiener Zucker" is sugar from Austria
When it comes to sugar, AGRANA relies on speciality products in the form of an
extensive product portfolio. Over 30 different varieties of sugar are produced
under the "Wiener Zucker" brand, including gelling and icing sugar as well as
sugar cubes. "Wiener Zucker" has also been available as organic products since
2008. Even in the case of conventional "Wiener Zucker" products, the entire
production process is free of chemical disinfectants; relying instead on natural
tree and hop extracts. The "Wiener Zucker" brand stands not only for diversity
and top product quality but for the products' Austrian origins in particular.
Because "Wiener Zucker" is made exclusively from sugar beet grown in Austria.
AGRANA converts agricultural raw materials into high-quality foods and numerous
industrial intermediate products. About 9,400 employees at 56 production
facilities worldwide generate annual Group revenue of around EUR 2.5 billion.
The Group was founded in 1988, is the global leader in fruit preparations and
also a major producer of fruit juice concentrates in Europe as well as being a
key manufacturer of customised potato, corn and wheat starch products as well as
organic ethanol in its Starch segment. AGRANA is one of the leading sugar
companies in Central and Eastern Europe.
This press release is available in German and English at www.agrana.com.
The press release is available in German and English at www.agrana.com [http://
end of announcement euro adhoc
Pictures with Announcement:
Image Caption (from left): AGRANA CEO Johann Marihart, Austrian Federal minister of Agriculture
Elisabeth Köstinger, Provincial government member (Lower Austria) Stephan Pernkopf, Provincial
Governor Lower Austria Johanna Mikl-Leitner, President of the Austrian sugar beet farmers Ernst
Karpfinger, Chairman of the AGRANA Supervisory Board Erwin Hameseder
Copyright: NLK Filzwieser
Fotograph: Günter Filzwieser
issuer: AGRANA Beteiligungs-AG
stockmarkets: Berlin, Wien, Stuttgart, Frankfurt
Digital press kit: http://www.ots.at/pressemappe/4/aom
AR-Kandidatin Andrea Gritsch, Agrana-HV 3.7.2020
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