RIGA, Latvia/ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates: Al Dahra Group, an Abu Dhabi-based agribusiness and one of the largest forage providers worldwide, has signed an exclusive supply agreement with Golden Fields, an Estonian agriculture company specializing in the production of premium quality animal feed grown in the Baltic region.
At an event in Riga attended by government officials, farmers, and businesses from Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia, Al Dahra Group and Golden Fields today announced the details of a long-term strategic partnership and supply agreement, and the opportunities it will provide for farmers in the Baltic region.
The agreement, provides Al Dahra Group with an exclusive offtake agreement for forage commodities, supplied by Golden Fields through contract farming agreements in Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia and Finland. Al Dahra Group has committed to supporting the construction of forage processing facilities, while also providing technical expertise on sourcing, production and sales.
The agreement will enable the construction of a processing facility for the dry milling of peas and beans which will supply Al Dahra Group with livestock pellets, high protein feed pellets, plant-based protein products and fiber products.
Arnoud van den Berg, Group CEO of Al Dahra Group, said that the agreement allows the company to purchase forage commodities such as corn silage, grasses, alfalfa, perennial grass combinations, and grass silage from farms across the Baltic region, process them locally, and then export them to meet the demand of customers across Northern Europe, Asia, North Africa and the Middle East.
“By partnering with Golden Fields, we are turning a promising new page for agriculture in the Baltic region. Golden Fields, through its network of respected farming cooperatives, ensures an undisrupted and long-term supply of forages for our customers around the world. Through these exports, the Baltic region’s farmers will have a very broad geographical reach”, Mr. Van den Berg said.
He continued, “Farmers in the Baltic region will be able to use land that was unsuitable for growing cereals and grains. Our partnership will make it simpler for farmers to reclaim land, vary their crop cycles, enhance soil structure, and promote sustainable farming.”
New factories – in the pipeline
Al Dahra Group’s partner Golden Fields has previously invested EUR 10 million in a roughage facility in Joniškis, Lithuania, and EUR 7 million in a comparable plant in Lääne County, Estonia. The business collaborates with the Lithuanian cooperative “Joniškio aruodas” and the Estonian cooperative “Kevili.”
Up to 150,000 metric tons of feed can be produced and processed at these facilities each year for commercial use.
“We collaborate with experienced farmers to produce high-quality feed from Estonian and Lithuanian fields. We also intend to construct comparable production lines in Finland, Western Estonia and Latvia with an additional capacity of 250,000 metric tons”, says Mahmoud Ahmed, CEO of Golden Fields.
According to Mr. Ahmed, the company will be able to speed up the expansion of its operations thanks to its partnership with Al Dahra Group, to achieve a production capacity of more than 400,000 metric tons in the next five years.
“In addition, we are working on the construction of a plant-based protein facility with an output of more than 100,000 metric tons of feed pellets in Estonia, while also assessing the possibility of expanding with a second facility of this kind in Lithuania, in the future”, notes the CEO of Golden Fields.
Mr. Ahmed says that the symbolic opening of the new facility in Joniškis, Lithuania, will take place on 23 May 2023, where the buildings for drying, pressing and storage of roughage, as well as the technological equipment, were installed in spring 2023.