The UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has launched an investigation into a deal by ABP to acquire two processing sites in Scotland, belonging to Scotbeef.

The acquisition of the Bridge of Allan abattoir and Queenslie meat packing plant from Scotbeef, was confirmed by ABP in June, and was expected to be completed by the end of July 2023. However, authorities want to check that the deal will not lead to a substantial lessening of competition, with an initial enforcement order applying from 29 July 2023.

That enforcement order does not prevent the transaction between both companies being completed, provided that ABP observes a number of restrictions. Collectively, these restrictions essentially force ABP and Scotbeef to continue to operate independently of each other.

A deadline for the completion of an initial Phase I review by the CMA has not yet been confirmed. It could decide to clear the deal or move to a more detailed Phase 2 investigation.

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