Today, Moy Park is a billion pound business operating across several countries; however, it began life as a modest farming company in 1943 in Moygashel, a small village and townland in County Tyrone, Northern Ireland, with interests in many aspects of farming including dairy, potatoes and egg production. Producing chickens for eating was actually just an incidental part of egg production with the male laying birds being processed and sold to the supermarkets as frozen whole chickens!
Click on the dates below to see information on what happened within Moy Park in that year.
In Grantham, Moy Park celebrated 40 years of our site with a series of celebrations for the 600 strong workforce. The site, based on Gonerby Road, achieved several milestones throughout this anniversary year - reaching a key safety achievement of over one million hours without a time lost accident as well as a production record of 950 tonnes in July 2022.
As part of our diversity, equality, inclusion & belonging strategy (DEIB) Moy Park established a steering team to provide a range of education & support opportunities for team members, relating to menopause. The team also focused on ways to reduce the stigma associated with menopause to encourage team members to feel more comfortable to discuss symptoms and seek support. The steering group team has established specialised training opportunities, including giving team members access to menopause qualified GPs to help them gain a better understanding of ways to manage symptoms and a new workplace menopause policy was created.
Pilgrim’s Shared Services Ltd consolidated existing UK-based transactional and group functions into a single business unit under the leadership of an Executive Leadership Team, drawn from UK and US-based Pilgrim’s Pride Corporation businesses to launch Pilgrim’s Shared Services Limited. The new single business unit will provide cross-functional support to Moy Park, Pilgrim’s UK and Pilgrim’s Food Masters with the three existing food businesses having a combined workforce of over 20,000 people across 35 locations in the UK and Europe.
Dedicated to championing careers in the food industry, Moy Park created 100 new apprenticeship roles across its GB and NI sites. With opportunities from Level 2 to Level 6, the apprenticeships were designed to nurture the next generation of talent across a range of disciplines including engineering, operations, food safety and quality.
Moy Park kick started its biodiversity project with the planting of 350 trees on the grounds of its facility in Ballymena. Working with local schools and businesses including Slemish College, Straid Nurseries, Mid and East Antrim Borough Council and the Woodland Trust, Moy Park has been working to enhance biodiversity around its Ballymena facilities, helping maintain a more diverse ecosystem in the local area and offset carbon emissions.
As part of our continued dedication to championing local biodiversity, Moy Park sponsored the People’s Park in Ballymena. The People’s Park provides a peaceful environment in an otherwise busy urban setting for local residents, including our employees to relax and embrace nature.
In 2022, Moy Park achieved ‘Platinum’ level for the ninth successive year in the Business in the Community Northern Ireland (BITCNI) Environmental Benchmarking Survey, ‘Platinum’ level status in the BITC NI Business and Biodiversity Charter and achieved the Sustainability Award at the 2022 Ballymena Chamber Business Awards.
Community and Charity Initiatives
Moy Park continued to support local groups and charities as part of the £1 million Community Support Fund established in 2020 to support organisations local to its operations across Europe.
As part of its two-year charity partnership with Alzheimer’s Society, the UK’s leading dementia charity - teams from across Moy Park took part in various fundraising activities helping raise awareness of the charity and the work they do to help those affected by dementia. Activities included sky dives, quizzes, marathons, and a hike to the summit of Slieve Donard as staff hit the £50K fundraising mark in December 2022.
Building on Moy Park’s range of existing and long-established community measures, the ‘Spring Chicken’ initiative was launched by Moy Park in Spring 2022. This provided local food banks across GB and NI with quality nutritious produce to help those struggling with everyday living costs and poverty in local communities.
By the end of 2022 calendar year, Moy Park had contributed over 400,000 meals to FareShare since the beginning of its partnership in 2015, helping reach those in need with nutritious, healthy food. Distributed by charities across the UK, these meals reached community groups supporting families and children, elderly people, those suffering with mental health conditions and services supporting people experiencing homelessness.
Supporting local schools and colleges, Moy Park donated over 160 Chromebook computers to nine schools, providing much needed digital resources for pupils and helping to assist with classroom and at-home learning.CLOSE
Moy Park has had its commitment to achieving net zero emissions validated by the SBTi.
Moy Park announced the Alzheimer’s Society as its official charity partner for the next two years.
We celebrated after receiving three internationally recognised awards for demonstrating high health and safety standards. The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) awarded Moy Park the Gold Award for the seventh consecutive year, as well as the Fleet Safety Gold Medal for the sixth year, and the Fleet Safety Technology Trophy.
The company has launched two new learning and development programmes, which have been rolled out across its Finance and HR teams. As well as providing upskilling and reskilling opportunities, each Academy offers regular workshops (face-to-face and virtual), bite-sized e-Learning, and a variety of online and video resources. Participants will also benefit from full access to an internal mentoring and coaching programme.
Moy Park has received globally recognised certification for soyabean traceability. The Chain of Custody (CoC) Standard from the Round Table on Responsible Soya Association (RTRS) recognises Moy Park’s Northern Ireland supply chain - from source right through to customer.
Moy Park placed the largest single order of IVECO natural gas trucks in the UK, committing to mass decarbonisation of our transport operation with 50 Liquified Natural Gas (LNG) IVECO Stralis NP, IVECO UK’s largest single order of gas trucks.
We launched our GB LGV Driver Apprenticeship scheme for those looking to ‘change gear’ and begin an exciting new career with an award-winning food company.
Congratulations to our Technical and R&D Director Europe, Ursula Lavery, who has been awarded an Associateship from CARAS, for her research on biosecurity, animal health and performance.
During 2021 Moy Park has donated 16.5 tonnes of fresh surplus chicken to FareShare, the UK’s largest food redistribution charity.
Moy Park is funding the training of adult social care workers, who will provide nursing and specialist care for young people, adults and the elderly, including specialist dementia care. The company has agreed to transfer £165,000 from its apprenticeship levy fund, enough to support potentially 40 NHS apprenticeships.CLOSE
• Recognised with the RoSPA Gold Occupational Health & Safety and Gold Fleet Safety Awards.
• The Craigavon site now boasts some of the most efficient and modern manufacturing technology available, including packaging technology, inline failsafe calibration capability, a new high-volume inspection line and added advanced chilling equipment.
• Zero waste to landfill position was maintained throughout the year and food waste reduced by more than 1,000 tonnes in 2020; and
• Achieved the top level ‘Platinum’ result in the Northern Ireland Environmental Benchmarking Survey for the eighth consecutive year.
• Moy Park together with its partners Queen’s University Belfast and JF McKenna, has been successful in attracting funding from Innovate UK to develop their £250,000 ‘Ideal Home’ project. With a life span of over 30 years, a poultry house presents a significant investment for farmers. The ‘Ideal Home’ project will focus on animal health and welfare while improving heating, ventilation, lighting and feeding systems through energy efficient and sustainable solutions.
• Moy Park on-line academy with over 1,000 e-learning modules;
• Launch of Commercial and Technical Academies with Finance, HR and Agriculture Academies in the pipeline;
• Partnership with the Leadership Pipeline enabling us to offer learning experiences for our first line leaders;
• Continuation of Values Workshops, including virtual sessions;
• Early Careers programmes for graduates and a pilot rotational placement programme with structured development;
• Expansion of learning resource library and internal mentoring programme; and
• Succession planning and personal development plans.
• Women working at Moy Park are to gain access to an industry-leading suite of career development tools and mentoring opportunities thanks to a new strategic partnership with Meat Business Women, the female-led group that champions women in the global meat industry.
• We continued our charity partnership with Marie Curie. Marie Curie is committed to offering the right care and support for people living with a terminal illness, and their families, whether it’s terminal cancer or any other illness;
• We donated the equivalent of more than 100,000 meals to FareShare, a charity aimed at relieving food poverty and reducing food waste, distributing this product to charity and community groups across the UK;
• Launched the Moy Park Community Fund pledging £1 million to support on-the-ground projects of voluntary and community groups and charities in those local communities where our sites are based across Europe;
• Inspiring young people through our community engagement which supports and develops youth employment in the economy through training and education outreach, bursaries, scholarships, work placements and experiences; and
• Partnered with Enactus UK in developing a network of socially minded young leaders of the future to create a better, more sustainable world.
• United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust made the decision to temporarily change Grantham and District Hospital into a Green site, meaning that it can be used to treat urgent surgical and cancer patients from across Lincolnshire who had been waiting for their operations due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The new Gonerby Road Health Clinic facility was donated to the Lincolnshire NHS by Moy Park, who have also helped develop the facilities and enhance the grounds to provide improved car parking.
• The Chicken Run is where we deliver our products to doorsteps across Northern Ireland and GB. Moy Parks aim is to call on people to nominate someone they know who is deserving of a visit from the ‘Chicken Run’ van – and the winning nominees will receive a food box with enough Moy Park chicken to make six meals for a family. The chicken run food boxes contain a range of different products including a whole chicken, chicken fillets, breaded and ready to eat chicken – there will be something for everyone.
• Moy Park’s culinary team in Craigavon has turned its new product development kitchen into a production line, and is creating 1,000 healthy, nutritious meals a week to be distributed by The Resource Centre Derry (RCD) during the COVID-19 pandemic.
• The meals we have provided can all be quickly heated up at home and have been made fresh by our culinary team on-siteCLOSE
The company’s strategic growth programme saw us invest £45 million across our facilities in 2019, further enhancing our position as one of the UK’s most advanced food manufacturing companies. We continued to invest in the main pillars of our business including talent development and operational excellence, as well as focusing food safety and quality.
We launched an ambitious new campaign to tackle the use of plastics and packaging across the business and industry. This included a plan to reduce the overall usage of packaging by 5% year on year, while also increasing the percentage of recyclable packaging by 5%.
Moy Park was recognised with a number of top awards recently including ‘Processor of the Year’ 2018 at the National Egg and Poultry Awards, ‘Best Poultry Product’ at the Meat Management Industry Awards 2018 and has also been awarded ‘Platinum’ level status for the sixth successive year in the NI Environmental Benchmarking Survey.CLOSE
2018 was a momentous year for Moy Park as we celebrated a landmark anniversary of 75 years in business. Our ongoing strategic investment programme saw us invest £40m across our facilities while also reaching a major production milestone, producing 6 million birds per week for the first time in our history.
Developments included the completion of a state-of-the-art hatchery in Newark, England. The facility is one of the first of its kind in Europe and hatches 2.5 million chicks per week, making it the largest single-build hatchery in the UK.
The company was also recognised with a number of top industry and business awards including the prestigious ‘Processor of the Year’ Award at the 2018 National Egg and Poultry Awards.CLOSE
U.S.-based Pilgrim’s Pride Corporation acquired Moy Park. Pilgrim’s is a publicly listed company in the U.S., with 2016 annual revenues of US$7.9 billion, and is part of JBS USA. It is one of the leading chicken producers in the world, with over 40,000 employees and operations in the U.S., Mexico and Puerto Rico. Like Moy Park, Pilgrim’s has a strong track record and commitment to driving growth. To learn more about Pilgrim’s, please refer to the company’s website: www.pilgrims.comCLOSE
• Moy Park has achieved a top 10 place within the leading UK Food and Drink companies (reference: The Grocer and OC&C Strategy Consultants).
- Ashbourne Hatchery investment capacity up to 1.2 m chicks per week with the latest in equipment and animal welfare standards.
- Ashbourne factory increase to over 1 million birds per week.
- Dungannon fresh primary site investment completed reaching 2.2 million birds per week.
- Craigavon £4m ‘Ready to Eat’ investment completed.
• Innovative development and launch of omega-3 chicken in collaboration with our partners. The UK's first chicken that is a source of omega 3. Omega 3s are polyunsaturated fatty acids that have healthy properties which help to maintain normal heart, brain and vision function.
• At the start of 2016 we announced a major investment in a strategic multi-year skills programme covering a comprehensive suite of training and learning initiatives including leadership and management development, technical competences and functional skills across the entire company workforce.
• UK Meat & Poultry Processing Awards - Processing Business of the Year; Retail Processor of the Year; Product Developer of the Year - 2016
• Food Manufacture Excellence Awards - ‘Training Programme of the Year’ - 2016
• The Grocer New Product Development Award - Roast in the Bag chicken - 2016CLOSE
JBS – One of the major highlights in 2015 was joining the JBS Group, one of the world’s most successful food companies.
5 million bpw – In 2015 Moy Park increased its output to 5 million chickens per week for the first time in the company’s history. This represents an increase of 60% in the past 6 years; growing from approximately 3.1 million birds per week in 2009.
Capex – In 2015 we carried out a significant capital investment programme to enhance production capabilities, securing Moy Park’s position as one of the most advanced food manufacturing companies in the UK. This includes the first phase of a major £20m investment at our primary processing facility in Dungannon in Northern Ireland, £4m in our ‘Ready to Eat’ facility in Craigavon, NI as well as a £10m investment in our Ashbourne factory and hatchery in England. Investment in supporting our agriculture infrastructure continued on farm and in hatcheries. Moy Park is proud to work with over 800 local farmers across the UK who supply poultry to the highest quality and welfare standards.
L&D – Investment has not focused solely on our operations, we also have a fundamental commitment to investing in, nurturing and developing our team members. Our learning and development programme is a great example of this. This framework offers opportunity for those at all levels throughout the business to develop skills to contribute to our success.
Recognition – In 2015 Moy Park received a number of important awards and accolades from customers and independent bodies. These include awards for sustainability, learning and development, marketing and product quality awards, such as:
•UK Food Manufacturing Company of the Year,
•RoSPA Health & Safety Award,
•IGD John Sainsbury Learning & Development Award,
•UK Director of the Year Award for Leadership in Corporate Responsibility from the national Institute of Directors.CLOSE
Celebrating World Environment Day in June Moy Park announced the achievement of the ambitious goal of sending zero waste to landfill across 14 manufacturing sites and agricultural base throughout the UK and Europe. In just four years Moy Park has reduced the amount of waste sent to landfill from 80% to 0%. Moy Park extended its corporate responsibility performance to achieve a 3 Star rating in the Corporate Responsibility Index (CR Index), and was confirmed as one of the most improved companies in the UK's leading and most in-depth voluntary benchmark of corporate responsibility assessed by Business in the Community. Moy Park's brand received global exposure through group sponsorship of the 2014 FIFA World Cup™.CLOSE
As part of Marfrig’s strategy of becoming a leading global food company with a strong presence in its core markets, the European business units were brought together as a united European Business under the direction and leadership of Moy Park. The purpose of this new and more integrated organisation is to drive sales volumes revenues and enhance margins across Marfrig’s UK, Ireland and Continental European business.
In April Moy Park announced plans for a major £20m investment in its Grantham food processing site in Lincolnshire. The investment came on line during the summer months with a new state-of-the-art Convenience Foods facility, creating over 150 additional jobs in the local area.
The Orleans, France, beef plant has been completely redeveloped with a €25 million euro investment in a 5,000 square metre extension doubling the size of the factory, improving traceability, modernising and simplifying production to improve competitiveness. Investment in new freezing technology has replaced the previous cryogenic deep freezing by nitrogen with the most modern and efficient mechanical chilling powered by electricity. The finished product is guaranteed 100% pure beef, only muscle meat is used in the production process so no ingredients, either salt or fat, are added to the patties. There are nearly 150 employees working on site.
In a strong signal of a positive commitment to customers and the local agriculture base, Moy Park launched a major grower expansion programme, which will increase breeder and broiler growing capacity by up to 400 poultry houses in Northern Ireland over the next 24 months to the end of 2015.
Moy Park’s performance as a corporately responsible business has been highlighted with recognition and awards in workplace and employment practices, the agricultural supply chain, environmental performance, sustainable best practice, manufacturing excellence and outstanding individuals.
In April Moy Park became the first company in the poultry industry to achieve Bronze in the Corporate Responsibility Index, as assessed by Business in the Community and we also achieved “Environmental Initiative of the Year” in the Meat & Poultry Processing Awards.
The business continues to materially invest in the further development of its commercial capabilities through areas such as innovative food development, consumer insight and effective customer and category marketing. Particularly pleasing is the progress made with the Moy Park brand in Ireland where it is now market leader.
Employment in Moy Park reached 12,000 colleagues, in part through this European reorganisation, and the business now processes 4.5m birds per week.
Moy Park was awarded the title “Processor of the Year” 2013 in the Pig & Poultry Marketing Awards.CLOSE
Jamie Oliver and Moy Park formed an exciting new partnership to produce a brand new range of ready to cook chicken products, reared to Compassion in World Farming standard. Jamie Oliver and Moy Park share similar values with our poultry farmers who employ the highest standards on their farms, ensuring sustainability, welfare and product quality are their priorities.
Moy Park entered into a two year golf sponsorship deal with the European Tour to support the 2012 Irish Open at Royal Portrush and the 2013 Irish Open at Carton House, Kildare.CLOSE
The Prince of Wales visited a Moy Park farm supplying “Duchy Originals from Waitrose”. Moy Park has supplied all the organic chicken for the Duchy Originals product range since 2011, products which are based on the values of local organic food, grown and produced sustainably.
Phase 1 of the £15m Ashbourne Redevelopment Project was completed in February 2011, which resulted in a new primary processing factory, with improved bird welfare facilities, the latest technology in gas stunning, offal recovery, state of the art odour abatement equipment and energy efficient utilities. In addition, the new Stork processing line has increased capability from 8,000 to 10,500 birds per hour. Phase 2 brought enhancements in the form of an automatic vehicle offloading system for animal welfare and employee health and safety, a more efficient cutting facility, effluent plant for improved environmental impact and an upgrade to amenities and site security.CLOSE
In 2010 O'Kane Poultry Limited in Ballymena, Co. Antrim was acquired. This move further improved Moy Park's performance, giving a record breaking sales revenue of £1.07bn in the year ending 31 December 2011. It also gave Moy Park a foothold into the turkey meat sector in which O'Kane Poultry is a major player. In November 2010 a new state of the art turkey processing facility was officially opened in Ballymena as part of a £21m investment. The investment has resulted in a 65,000-square foot factory extension, which allows production of one million fresh turkeys for the Christmas period.CLOSE
Moy Park opened its state of the art £28m factory in Anwick following a complete redevelopment of the site based on an evolution of the successful Dungannon model which doubled the footprint of the factory and raised capacity initially to 1.4 million birds per week.CLOSE
In 2008, the OSI Group transferred ownership of Moy Park Limited to the £1.2bn Brazilian Food Group Marfrig. The acquisition meant that Moy Park was now part of the world’s 9th largest poultry company and the 4th largest red meat company. It also gave Moy Park a more global perspective.CLOSE
In 2004 Moy Park took the lead in two acquisitions with its parent company OSI Group effectively doubling the size of Moy Park.
The first, GW Padley Poultry, was one of the UK’s largest poultry producers, with its own chicken farms, as well as processing plants in Grantham, Wisbech, Anwick, and Bury St. Edmunds. The addition of Padley helped to double Moy Park’s total production capacity, boosting sales to more than £600 million.
Soon after, OSI completed a second UK acquisition, Dove Valley, based in Ashbourne, primarily supplying whole chickens and chicken portions, as well as a limited amount of cooked chicken products.CLOSE
The Dungannon primary plant was refurbished and expanded, making it the most modern site in Europe operating to the highest standards of quality and efficiency. The new factory more than doubled the size of the existing Dungannon site to over seven hectares and is now capable of portioning over half a million birds per week. From 2009 the site became the headquarters to all Moy Park’s agricultural management.CLOSE
Investment was not restricted to bricks and mortar - Investors in People Awards were gained by most sites in the group throughout the 1990s.
The position in France was consolidated with the acquisition of the former Cuisine de Licques plant in Marquise, offering state-of-the-art technology for the manufacture of sandwich meat.
In 1998 the joint venture with Bourgoin was bought out giving Moy Park sole ownership of the site at Henin Beaumont near Lille.CLOSE
In 1996 Moy Park became part of the Global OSI Group yielding many synergies across a number of boundaries.CLOSE
Developments continued apace - joint ventures with Bourgoin in France (1991); a new state-of-the-art parent stock hatchery at Carn; and a new cold store, also at Carn, consolidated the group’s position. Sales to the GB supermarkets had grown as the supermarkets had become the nation’s grocers, and to meet their needs a commercial office at Crewe had become the sales and marketing nerve centre of the company.CLOSE
In 1980 the acquisition of Kew House Farm from Dalgety gave the company its first factory in England.
The turning point for Moy Park Limited, and the real start of the Moy Park story, was in 1984, when the company was sold to the directors by Courtaulds. The new owners wasted no time in moving into what is now the company’s headquarters and major manufacturing site at Craigavon, Co. Armagh. Rapid and extensive investment was made in the site, including complete refurbishment in 1990. This was the start of the company’s very rapid growth into the burgeoning convenience foods market.
Products that we take for granted today were very new then, and were eagerly adopted by families who appreciated the time saved by high quality, good value products which were quick and easy to cook.CLOSE
Meanwhile, the agriculture side of the business was developing, and a second hatchery for broiler stock was opened in 1973. Over the next two years the Moira factories were further expanded to move into cooked and portioned chilled chicken. In 1975 the new primary processing plant at Coolhill near Dungannon, Co Tyrone was opened and became the first chicken processing factory in Ireland to be granted an EEC export licence.CLOSE
In 1968 Courtaulds bought the share capital of both Moygashel and Moy Park, and production continued to increase so that by 1972 it was 10 fold that of the early 1960’s. At this time whole chickens were the only product on offer and were still a Sunday treat for most families!CLOSE
For the first time in 1963 the company began to supply the expanding GB supermarkets. The new facilities at Moira had enabled it to take on large volume contracts, which the new and fast-growing supermarkets were placing. This was only the start of things to come, and in 1966 a new factory was built on a green field site in Moira, quadrupling capacity.CLOSE