Neovia will acquire 100 percent interest in Epicore, a North American company specialized in the manufacture of larval feed and probiotics on the global aquaculture market and, more specifically, shrimp. Through the complementarity of the expertise of the two companies and Neovia’s international research and development network, Neovia intends to develop its aquaculture business and offer new natural and sustainable solutions for livestock farming: probiotics.

Epicore manufactures feed and probiotics for the shrimp market and employs more than 35 people. Founded in 1987, the company’s headquarters and its production facility are located in Eastampton, New Jersey. The company has storage space and a key technical center within its Ecuadorian subsidiary which facilitates the distribution of its products and services in the largest shrimp-producing country in the Americas and the fourth largest producer in the world with 400,000 tons of shrimp feed produced per year, according to FAO.

Epicore has a leading expertise in manufacturing liquid feed for shrimp larvae and recognized global expertise in the production of probiotics. Probiotics are living micro-organisms that are naturally present in the body. They help balance intestinal flora and stimulate immune defenses. These natural solutions help to reduce stress and mortality rate of shrimp to promote sustainable growth in shrimp ponds.

Sustainable growth of the shrimp market

With an estimated world production of 3.6 million tons, the shrimp market has been steadily growing for more than a decade. However, in recent years, the market has slowed or even stagnated in some countries due to the appearance of several diseases (early mortality syndrome, white spot syndrome virus). In response to these major health challenges, shrimp farmers have had to adapt their production model and adopt new measures to control their ponds more effectively: water quality control, biosecurity, better quality larvae, and the use of probiotics. As a result, Neovia’s acquisition of Epicore will bring the company leading-edge expertise in probiotics fully in line with its holistic approach to aquaculture which ranges from feed to pond management. This holistic approach is the guarantee of sustainable medium-term market growth.

Complementary and promising synergies

This acquisition will allow the two companies to benefit from numerous synergies worldwide, particularly with regards to R&D and innovation. Neovia’s aquaculture business will also benefit from an expanded portfolio of products and services as well as new expertise in the production of probiotics first for aquaculture species and then for the group’s other species.

William Long, CEO of Epicore said: “We are delighted to be able to share our expertise in probiotics with a large international group like Neovia. The strength of its R&D expertise and its international innovation network will allow us to develop new applications for the international aquaculture market and other markets together.”

Asia is one of Neovia’s main development areas and aquaculture is one of its priority businesses. With Epicore, the group has additional resources to accelerate its growth in the Asian shrimp industry. Four out of the world’s top five shrimp-producing countries are located in this region: China, India, Vietnam, and Indonesia.

Hubert de Roquefeuil, CEO of Neovia, added: “With the acquisition of Epicore, Neovia’s aquaculture business will achieve its critical size to accelerate its international development, especially in Asia where we can rely on the group’s presence and our recognized aquaculture expertise in Latin America (Ecuador, Brazil, Mexico) and Vietnam. Epicore has a lot to offer to Neovia and I am pleased to welcome its teams of experts in probiotics to our company which will allow us to complement our portfolio of products and services and offer high-performance and sustainable solutions to farmers all over the world.”