The Bell Food Group at a glance

The Bell Food Group is one of the leading European providers in its product groups and is number one in Switzerland. Our roots stretch back to 1869 when Samuel Bell opened his butcher's shop in the inner city of Basel. Today, as an international food corporation we pursue our vision «Together to the top» by giving pleasure to millions of consumers every day.

The Bell Food Group’s product offering ranges from meat, poultry and charcuterie to seafood and ultra-fresh, fresh and non-perishable convenience products such as salads, sandwiches, ready meals, pasta, soups and condiments. More than 12,000 employees in 15 countries work hard every day to produce high-quality food products. To achieve this objective, we work closely with our suppliers and distribution partners in the retail trade, food service sector and food processing industry.

Employees

12’442

Production sites

54

Countries

15

The main operating figures

in CHF million


2018
2017

Proceeds from sale of goods

4‘143.2+15.443‘589.0

Gross profit

1‘567.2+19.571‘310.7

Equity

1‘290+64.48784.3

Net investments in property, plant and equipment

216.9+91.27113.4

EBITDA

305.4+8.84280.6

EBIT

140.6-6.08149.7

Annual profit

89.3-16.5106.5

Strategy

We have developed four strategic approaches to achieve our vision «Together to the top».

History

From a small ox butchery in Basel’s inner city to one of the leading producers of meat and convenience products in Europe – a history spanning more than 150 years.

Sales volume

in million kilograms


2018
2017

Total sales volume

542.9+19.63453.8

Fresh meat

55.4-0.1855.5

Poultry

157.4+3.35152.3

Charcuterie

131.4+1.08130.0

Seafood

7.3+2.827.1

Convenience

190.7+76.25108.2

Products and core markets

Fresh meat, poultry, charcuterie and seafood

In our core market of Switzerland, Bell procures and processes fresh beef, veal, pork and lamb. Our own meat production is supported with targeted purchases of meat ready for processing and game specialities from suppliers inside and outside Switzerland.

We offer a complete range of self-service and over-the-counter products to the retail trade as well as special product ranges specifically developed for the food service and food processing industry.

In Switzerland, Bell is the market leader or holds a leading position in most product groups.

In Switzerland and Austria, we have an integrated production process for poultry and control the entire value chain, from the egg to the final, ready-to-serve product. We are a major provider of chicken products in Switzerland through Bell and market leader in Austria with Hubers Landhendl. Süddeutsche Truthahn AG is a significant provider of top-quality regional turkey products in Bavaria. We are one of the leading manufacturers of poultry products from programmes with higher animal welfare standards (e.g. organic) in the DACH countries (Germany, Austria and Switzerland).

Thanks to several production plants in seven countries, Bell offers a wide range of charcuterie products from its own production. These include cooked sausages, cured sausages, air-dried ham, cured meat products and dried meat. The range also includes a large number of specialities with protected geographical status such as Black Forest ham, Bündnerfleisch or saucisson d’Auvergne. Bell Germany is the market leader for air-dried ham and a well-known provider of cooked and cured sausages and convenience meat products in its home market. In France and increasingly also in Spain, Bell is one of the emerging providers of regional cured sausage and air-dried ham specialities. We are an important provider of cured and cooked sausages in Poland and Hungary.

Bell Seafood is the leading provider of seafood in Switzerland. This agile and experienced unit very successfully markets fresh domestic and imported fish, crustaceans, seafood and frozen products. The product range is aimed at self-service and over-the-counter sales by Swiss retailers as well as the food service sector.

Convenience

Eisberg specialises in the production of freshly cut salads and also offers a wide range of cut vegetable and fruit selections. The range is expanded with innovative products such as smoothie mixes and salad dressings. Eisberg is either the leader or a market determinant in the production of fresh cut salads in Switzerland and Eastern Europe.

Hilcona produces fresh, frozen and non-perishable convenience products and fresh meals, various pasta creations, sandwiches, tinned food and many other products in its Schaan (FL) and Orbe (CH) facilities. The establishment of a centre of excellence for vegetarian products in Landquart (CH) has strengthened Hilcona’s position in the production of vegetarian and vegan convenience products, in particular tofu made from organic Swiss soya.

Hilcona is the leading supplier of convenience products in Switzerland and the market leader in fresh pasta in Germany and Austria. Hilcona also operates in France, Poland and the Benelux countries.

Hügli supplements the existing convenience range with non-perishable convenience products. These include soup, sauces, bouillons, seasoning mixes, dressings and dips, desserts, functional foods, chilled herb-based products and vegetarian and vegan products. Hügli supplies the food service sector, manufactures products for branded companies, the retail sector as well as the food processing industry and distributes its own brand products, primarily products certified as organic. Hügli is a leading provider of non-perishable convenience products in its domestic markets of Switzerland and Germany. Hügli also has production plants in Italy, Spain, the UK, the Netherlands and Eastern Europe. An international network of production facilities is supplemented by its own sales organisations in Austria, Hungary, Slovakia and Poland.

Customers and sales channels

We service countless customers in the retail channel, food service sector and food processing industry. We deliver our products to retailers of varying sizes, from large supermarkets to speciality and convenience shops. Our customers in the food service sector include system caterers, industrial caterers, hotels, take-aways and traditional restaurants, among others. Our sales to the food processing industry are based on delivering specific components to other manufacturers of food products.

As a rule, we supply our customers in the food service sector through the wholesale cash and carry and delivery channels. The convenience sector is partly serviced by specialised sales organisations and internal logistics solutions.

Suppliers

For the Bell Food Group, quality management starts with the selection of the best raw materials. We prefer suppliers who meet our requirements for sustainable operations. Sustainability is an explicit component of our procurement strategy, from the selection of our suppliers to the consumption of materials. Framework agreements are concluded with all our major suppliers. As part of a systematic approach to supplier management, all our suppliers are audited once a year.

Elements such as animal husbandry and feeding methods are important criteria in meat production. The Bell Food Group has defined clear basic rules for the purchase of animals for slaughter, meat and fish in relevant guidelines. The route taken by the meat is fully documented and can be traced all the way from receipt of the raw materials to the individual consumer unit.

Whenever possible, Eisberg obtains the raw materials for its salads from regional producers in the catchment area of its production plants. A team of Eisberg specialists supports all suppliers with on-site advice and help. Thanks to a strong network covering a number of countries, Eisberg can procure raw materials in its usual top quality even in adverse weather conditions.

Hilcona favours growing its own raw materials through its subsidiary Hilcona Agrar. Where this is not possible, Hilcona works together with long-standing suppliers. 99 percent of its vegetables come from around 350 contract farmers in Switzerland and Liechtenstein. Only certified Swiss organic soya is used for the production of its tofu products.

A key element in the production of Hügli's high-quality food products is the use of raw materials in the right quality and suitable packaging materials. Hügli works closely with its long-standing and highly efficient suppliers, all of whom can guarantee compliance with these high standards and the year-long availability of processed raw materials.

Strategy

We have developed four strategic approaches to achieve our vision «Together to the top».

History

From a small ox butchery in Basel’s inner city to one of the leading producers of meat and convenience products in Europe – a history spanning more than 150 years.