Almarai (Arabic for “The Pasture”), was established in Riyadh in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in 1977 as a partnership between the Irish agri-foods pioneer Alastair McGuckian and his brother Paddy, and Prince Sultan bin Mohammed bin Saud Al Kabeer.Today, Almarai is the largest vertically integrated dairy company in the world.
During the early 1990s, Almarai entered a period of restructuring and reinvestment that took it from a decentralized to a centralized structure. Five decentralized processing plants were replaced with the a central processing plant. Also ten small scattered dairy farms were replaced with four large dairy farms in Al Kharj in the central region.
2005 brought many developments for Almarai, a second larger central processing plant was commissioned, incorporating a new cheese plant, two new super-farms were commissioned and Almarai a publicly listed company that has around 70,000 shareholders.
Almarai was the first dairy farm in to be accredited with ISO 22000. Almarai also received the ISO 9001-2000, across all its operating divisions, (farming, procurement, processing, technical research and development, distribution and supply chain.
Upholding the principle that human resources are the integral part of sustainable growth, Almarai continuously invests in recruiting talented professionals who add value to the organization. The company also focuses on refining its employees’ skills and enhancing their leadership competencies.