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BEF, PepsiCo Ink Deal

Black Earth Farming, a Swiss grain producer with operations in Russia, signed a three-year strategic partnership agreement with PepsiCo Russia, BEF said in a press release, Interfax reported.

"BEF will become a significant supplier of sunflower seeds and potatoes used in the production of Frito-Lay's potato chips as well as sugar beets for other PepsiCo products," it said. "The PepsiCo contract could potentially represent 30 percent of BEF's revenue by 2015, and this, combined with our export program, completely changes our profitability, risk profile and growth potential," BEF CEO Richard Warburton is quoted as saying in the press release.

To fulfill its commitments under the agreement, BEF will need to spend about $55 million to expand its area for potato and sugar beet production.

(MT)

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