Bega sells its share of Vitasoy after more than 20 years

David Tyack, Managing Director at Vitasoy Australia, has confirmed that Bega has sold its 49 per cent stake in Vitasoy to Hong Kong-based Vita International. 

“The transaction has not yet been completed…[but] I can confirm that the transfer of ownership is occurring as announced to the ASX by Bega Cheese, and the HKSE by Vita International on the 30th of January 2023,” said Tyack.

According to an ASX announcement from Bega in October 2022, Vita international enforced its “change of control” rights under the shareholder’s agreement, opting to acquire all of Bega’s shares.

“What we do know is this transaction does not change our Australian Operations, we’re still made in Wodonga and source our nuts, beans and grains from Australian farmers. As for further details, we’ll be able to provide more information at the completion of the sale,” said Tyack. 

Bega will assess its options after the sale and seek to re-enter what it calls the “growing market” for plant base beverages in Australia. 

According to data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), demand for animal-free alternatives, including plant-based milk, is growing by the minute.

Paul Atyeo, a health statistics spokesperson from the ABS, said the average apparent consumption of dairy and meat substitutes has risen 29 per cent since the 2018-19 financial year.

“About 17 grams of apparent consumption per person per day came from dairy milk substitutes like soy milk or almond milk. This is equivalent to about half a metric cup per week.

“Consumption of dairy milk substitutes rose four grams per day between 2018-19 and 2020-21, mirroring a four grams per day fall in dairy milk over the same two-year period,” Atyeo said.

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