Friday, September 28 14:18:23
Dale Farm has announced that it is to invest £6 million to double the output of its cheddar cheese operation at Cookstown, Co Tyrone creating one of the most advanced cheddar and whey nano-filtration facilities in Europe. This is the final phase of company's major £39 million development plan which has created over 60 new jobs.
This latest investment is being backed by approximately £1million of grant support from Invest NI.
The investment will increase the output at the Cookstown plant to eight tonnes of cheddar per hour, enabling Dale Farm to further expand its sales into the growing UK and Irish cheese markets as well as to selected export destinations.
The growth in cheese production will also boost Dale Farm's output of lucrative whey products - a global market which has grown considerably for the business in the last two years.
It added that the planned expansion will increase the demand for local milk offering greater security to the 1,800 family farms who are members of United Dairy Farmers coop - the parent company of Dale Farm - and who supply over 1 billion litres of milk to the co-operative each year.
Speaking on the investment, Dale Farm's Group Chief Executive, David Dobbin, said: "This investment will provide the best in class capability and economies of scale that we need to successfully compete against major international competitors in cheddar cheese and whey products. It will also provide much needed processing capacity to handle the growing volume of locally produced milk allowing Dale Farm and the farmers who supply us with milk to grow in more value added products."