The investment will mean the introduction of new technology including production lines which make it possible to extend individual traceability to all products. The investment will also help to fund an improvement in the export opportunities of Finnish chicken meat.
The company said it planned to implement a number of projects at the end of 2018 and the rest by the end of May 2019. The new production lines would be introduced step by step in the spring, the company said.
Atria said it has invested in the plants as demand for poultry and poultry-based products were growing strongly. Consumption has increased steadily over the last few years, at an annual rate of about 3%, it said.
“We believe that domestic antibiotic-free chicken meat will continue to grow,” said Matti Perälä, director of Atria Finland's Poultry business.
He said that demand had “risen steadily” in all products, especially in the popularity for boneless chicken. Part of the investment would increase the production capacity of boneless products, he said.
The company added that the investment would also see particular attention paid to work ergonomy and occupational safety in new production lines.
Atria is one of the leading meat and food companies in the Nordic countries, Russia and Estonia.
In 2017, its net sales exceeded €1.43bn and it employed approximately 4,449 meat and food experts in Finland, Sweden, Denmark, Russia and Estonia. Atria's shares have been listed on Nasdaq Helsinki since 1994.