Lakeland Dairies Chairman Alo Duffy; Heather Humphreys TD, Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht; Michael Hanley Group CEO Lakeland Dairies and Agriculture Minister Michael Creed TD
The Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Michael Creed TD officially opened the new €40m technologically advanced milk powder plant at Lakeland Dairies in Bailieboro, Co Cavan this morning.
The local facility is among the most advanced milk powder plants in the world and one of the largest such plants in Europe.
The investment has been supported by the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation through Enterprise Ireland and is creating 85 new jobs across the Lakeland Dairies Group between now and 2019.
Lakeland Dairies’ Chairman, Alo Duffy added, "With this new facility Lakeland Dairies will compete at the forefront of the global dairy food ingredients industry. This development will underpin our further progress in a rapidly changing world of international trade where we have a heritage of over 120 years in dairy farming and an unstinting commitment to making the most excellent dairy products for all of our customers.”
Meanwhile, the co-op is one of Ireland’s leading farmer owned dairy processing units processing over 1.2b litres of farm produced milk annually into 240 value-added dairy foodservice products and food ingredients for export to over 80 countries worldwide.
This is Lakeland Dairies third milk drying plant at its Bailieboro processing centre.
The co-op will now produce over 160,000 tonnes of milk powders and 50,000 tonnes of butter annually on the same site thus allowing greater flexibility in milk throughput and overall economies of scale for the food ingredients business.
Lakeland Dairies Group CEO Michael Hanley said the company’s strategy was to create long term competitiveness and sustainability for its milk producers and to meet the long term needs of its valued customers in the global food industry.
“We see constant demand for our products and have created a culture of innovation and excellence across our entire organisation which will continue to drive the business forward,” he continued.
“In particular, we are addressing opportunities in the areas of infant formulas, dairy proteins, food manufacturing and health related nutritional products, among other categories, where we are already a globally recognised leading supplier of powders.”
This latest development by Lakeland Dairies is designed to ensure that the co-op is well positioned to take advantage of all future market opportunities for its milk producers.
The expansion saw the installation of a new seven tonne per hour milk dryer and evaporators where total milk powder production capacity has now increased to 20 tonnes per hour.
The plant has the highest levels of efficiency including heat recovery systems and its energy centre can also supply electricity back into to the national grid.