Costa Rica’s Agriculture Ministry (MAG) announced that it will provide ¢900 million (about $1.78 million) to Coopemontecillos R.L., the country’s largest meat supplier. The funding will be used to refurbish and improve the company’s meat processing infrastructure and to “elevate the competiveness of the meat sector,” the ministry said.
Demand for Costa Rican meat is expected to be bolstered by the Central American-European Union Association Agreement, signed in May.
According to MAG, the financial support will allow Coopemontecillos to produce enough additional meat to fill 200 shipping containers, which could account for an extra $60,000 in annual revenue. Coopemontecillos, the nation’s leading meat producer since 1965, accounts for 30 percent of the national slaughter. In addition to supplying the local market, the company also distributes meat to other countries in Central America, the United States, China, Japan, Puerto Rico and Mexico. Coopemontecillos also provides meat to the McDonald’s fast-food chain.
“We are providing this support to Coopemontecillos because of the large social significance of the company and because we think that by assisting them many small national farmers will be better equipped to compete,” said Gloria Abraham, the agriculture minister. “Coopemontecillos has done its homework on how to properly produce and process; they are in compliance with the international standards and know the existing market. By helping them, we will are improving the entire meat sector.”
Coopemontecillos has 750 national employees and works with 450 national meat producers.