Arla Foods UK has announced plans to invest approximately £37.5 million in its UK sites and logistics in 2017.
The investment represents an increase of more than 50% on 2016, and will be spread across all of its production, packing and distribution sites as well its logistics operation.
The plans include £5 million to further develop capacity and harness the latest technologies for cheese making at its Taw Valley creamery in Devon; £5 million to build a new packing facility for own-label flavoured milk at its Stourton dairy in Leeds; plus £3 million to provide supporting facilities so that production can continue during planned maintenance work at its Anchor butter operation in Wiltshire.
Arla will also spend £3.5 million at its fresh milk processing site in Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, with ‘a significant proportion’ being set aside for new processing equipment for Arla BoB. The product, released this time last year, is a fat-free milk that ‘tastes as good as semi-skimmed’.
The investments revealed today form part of Arla’s strategy to grow its group-wide revenue by almost one-third by 2020.
Arla Foods UK managing director Tomas Pietrangeli said: “Last year, I unveiled the most ambitious UK business strategy to date to make Arla a household brand by 2020 and grow its revenue by nearly a third. This ambition is part of the company’s global strategy for growth and will position Arla as the champion of British dairy. By continually investing and improving our sites, we can ensure we grow capacity, maintain high quality of our products and ultimately return the best possible price to our farmer owners.”
The £37.5 million investment is part of the £285 million that Arla is spending at its sites around the world. It will support its global Strategy 2020 by moving more milk from bulk into branded, own label and foodservice sales. The overall outlay represents the highest ever single-year supply chain investment in the company’s history.
The global figure will be focused on production upgrades at core markets such as Germany, the UK, Denmark and Sweden – as well as on production sites that supply high-quality dairy products to Arla’s emerging markets outside the European Union.
Arla CEO Peder Tuborgh said: “With these investments we continue our relentless pursuit of the goals in our Strategy 2020 to move more milk from bulk into brands and improve the profitability for our farmer-owners. You will see Arla take an even stronger position in the market as the innovative farmer-owned dairy company, providing great-tasting, natural dairy products that help people make good food choices. That is the main focus of these investments.”
Arla’s annual investment forecast has been confirmed and approved by its board of directors, consisting primarily of elected farmer-owners.
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2017