Belgium: Oldest malthouse in the country sold to Soufflet

Malteries Soufflet and Jean Louis Dourcy, majority shareholder of Castle Malting (La Malterie du Château), announced today the signature of a binding agreement on the acquisition by Malteries Soufflet of 100% of the Belgian company. The acquisition is planned to be finalized during the first quarter of 2023.

InVivo, a French union of agricultural cooperatives that bought the former family owned Groupe Soufflet in 2021 (, 6.5.2021) wishes to make the malt business one of the founding pillars of its economic model and to continue its development in order to make its malt division a world leader. Castle Malting, that offers a range of traditional and special malts, “will give Malteries Soufflet the opportunity to develop its activity in the higher value-added ‘craft’ market, with a platform enabling it to supply brewers throughout the world,” the company said in a statement.

Castle Malting, formerly known as Malterie de Beloeil, was established in 1868 and is the oldest malthouse in Belgium. The company can look back on an eventful history.

The malting plant was partly destroyed in both world wars but always rebuilt. About 20 years ago the malthouse was completely shut down by its former owners.

It is thanks to Jean-Louis Dourcy that the malthouse still exists today. The former general manager of Belgomalt (today part of Boortmalt) realized that the closure of the malthouses Dylamalt and De Wolf-Cosyns in Aalst by Interbrew (today AB InBev) left a gap in the market and a further need for specialty malts. After Dourcy bought the facility in 2003, he renamed it Malterie du Chateau (Castle Malting) and gradually put back the Beloeil malthouse into operation. After several enlargements, the malthouse has today a capacity of about 40,000 metric tons.

Castle Malting produces about 70 different types of malt, including the various roasted and caramel malts. About 96% of the production goes abroad to about 2,000 customers in 146 countries. However, the company not only offers a wide range of malts but also hops, yeasts and related products and services needs used in breweries.

Jean-Louis Dourcy, CEO of Castle Malting: "I am delighted with this agreement with the InVivo group which is a leading international agri-food player with an already powerful malt division. I am confident that Malteries Soufflet will be able to make the most of the strengths of Castle Malting and further its development."

Thierry Blandinières, CEO of InVivo: "The acquisition of Castle Malting will provide good prospects in the craft market, a high value-added market where we are not yet very present. In addition, Castle Malting will strengthen our malt business, a strategic activity for InVivo that will experience significant growth in the coming years."

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