Kerry co-op is to offer an opportunity for members to cash in their shares. A board meetingon Wednesday approved the proposal to offer an cash out opportunity later this year, with subsequent opportunities to follow in future years.

Kerry co-op owns 13.7% of the shareholding in Kerry Group, worth over €2.2bn. The average shareholding among Kerry co-op's 13,267 shareholders is thus valued at approximately €167,000. The money paid out to shareholders will be regarded as income and subject to income tax.

Business purchase

The board are also intent on exploring the option of purchasing the agribusiness from Kerry Group plc. Negotiations between the two sides will now be required, as no indicative price or valuation model is contained in the optional clause set out in the contract between the two entities.

Current relations between the co-op and the plc are at a low ebb, following the prolonged row over bonus payments. The arbitration process to resolve that issue has been completed, with both sides awaiting a ruling.

The Irish Farmers Journal understands that the Kerry co-op share register is still administered by Kerry Group, so their involvement in the upcoming process will be required.