Interview with Country Manager Jean Gallen

Naapurin Maalaiskana works with slaughter and production of chicken, and has been a part of the Scandi Standard Group since 2015. The company focuses on sales of fresh and frozen chicken products in the Finnish market, through its own brand and private label.

Business conditions in 2022, with rising energy prices, historic interest-rate hikes and inflation, are presenting enormous challenges for the entire food industry in Finland. Despite these factors, Naapurin Maalaiskana has both captured market shares and taken crucial steps to futureproof its business.

“Due to the economic climate during 2022, consumers have been leaning toward inexpensive products. The demand for fillets has fallen, and people are increasingly choosing to purchase chicken thighs or wings in the stores. We utilise the entire chicken, which allows us to offer a wide range of products that are suitable for all budgets,” explained Jean Gallen, CEO of Naapurin Maalaiskana.

“We have strengthened our position in the market and taken crucial steps to future-proof our business.”

– Jean Gallen, CEO of Naapurin Maalaiskana

Greater market share

“The Finnish food market was shaken up in 2022 to the extent that in value terms it reduced the volume of the chicken industry. Naapurin Maalaiskana has succeeded in maintaining a good level of growth, primarily driven by the continued positive development of its own brand,” Jean Gallen explained.

“That our own brand, Naapurin Maalaiskana, now accounts for nearly half of all sales is confirmation that consumers appreciate what we produce. We are also noting a continued positive trend for chicken in general in the market.”

Historic price adjustments

A focal point in 2022 was to strengthen the business in the long term, which has entailed upward price adjustments. Despite these measures, chicken continues to be one of the most inexpensive and affordable proteins.

“Price increases are always difficult to navigate and communicate. A period of stabilisation will now follow to allow consumers to become accustomed to the new situation. The fact that chicken is a healthy, climate-friendly and still-affordable protein, means that chicken will continue to be competitive and in demand in Finland,” Jean Gallen explained.

Milestones 2022

• The plant was expanded from 4,500 to 7,300 square metres and is operating at full capacity.

• Certified “A” for food safety in accordance with BRC’s global standard.

• Awarded “Growth Company 2022” by business magazine, Kauppalehti.