This year, the firm is planning to further upgrade its processing capacity and consolidate its presence in a number of new foreign markets, according to senior company representatives.
Boguslaw Miszczuk, chief executive of Sokolów, said the company’s expansion plans are related to its improved financial performance in 2016.
Sales on the rise
“We processed 15,000 tonnes of meat more than a year earlier,” Miszczuk said. “Owing to the efforts of the managers and employees of Sokolów, we were able to increase our sales by 3% year-on-year [and] we expanded our workforce by 250 employees.”
This year, the meat processor is aiming to “continue to develop our product range, continue our investments in acquiring new technologies and pursue our market expansion”, according to the chief executive. This is to enable Sokolów to add new products to its range, including gluten-free and additive-free products which have been increasingly popular among its customers, Miszczuk said.
While the domestic market continues to generate the majority of the company’s revenues, Sokolów’s foreign expansion was one of the driving forces behind its higher sales for 2016.
“Countries such as Qatar and Chile opened their markets to our products. Our snacks and dry sausages are also increasingly popular in the US,” Miszczuk said.
In addition to this, last year, Sokolów added 11 new stores to its retail chain in the Polish market. The stores are part of the Delikatesy Miesne Sokolów (Meat Delicatessen Sokolów) chain.
Asked about major challenges faced by the meat processor last year, Miszczuk said “the most important problem was the spread of the African swine fever”.
Based in Sokolów Podlaski, in the country’s north-eastern part, the company says its history dates back to 1899, and it was Poland’s first meat industry player to become listed on the Warsaw Stock Exchange (WSE) in 1993. In 2006, Sokolów left the WSE, and is currently owned by Danish Crown. The Randers-based group says its Polish subsidiary posts revenues of some DKK5.8bn (€780m) per year.
“Sokolów sells the majority of its production in the Polish market. Exports, however, are on the increase,” according to Danish Crown.
In the Polish market, Sokolów owns seven meat-processing facilities located in Robaków, Kolo, Dębica, Czyżew, Jaroslaw, Tarnów and Sokolów Podlaski. The plants are operated by a total workforce of about 6,800 employees.
The company’s portfolio consists of a wide range of processed pork, poultry and beef meat products, according to data released by Sokolów. The meat processor makes hams, sausages and dry sausages, frankfurters, cold cuts, steaks and many other products. Sokolów says it sells its products under the Gold, Sokoliki, Uczta Qulinarna, Naturrino and Darz Bor brands. The company’s facilities are IFS, BRC and ISO 14001 certified.