Potato processor Lamb Weston/Meijer has inaugurated a new €120 million production facility in the Netherlands.
The plant in Bergen op Zoom, in the south of the country, will benefit from a new production line and has otherwise been completely renovated. The investment, Lamb Weston/Meijer said, would allow it to process potatoes in ‘a more effective and sustainable way’ and meet ‘growing demand for existing and new frozen potato products’ from customers around the world.
The new production line includes cutting, optical sorting, frying, freezing and utility functions, consistent with the Lamb Weston/Meijer’s goals for sustainability and creating shared value.
The opening of the plant was attended by representatives of Lamb Weston/Meijer, local government and the Dutch king.
Plant manager Bert Jan Maris said: “The expansion and renovation of our plant fits in our sustainability strategy: less water, less energy, less emissions and less residues; we process the potatoes as optimally as possible.”
And Joost Polderdijk, project leader for construction company De Kok Bouwgroep, added: “A special feature of this project is that the production continued during the expansion process. It was really important to always meet the food safety requirements of the customer.”
Lamb Weston/Meijer claimed that its investment in the site was testament to the fact that Bergen op Zoom is ‘not only an ideal location for the supply and processing of potatoes but also for the distribution of frozen potato products such as Twisters, Crisscuts and fries’.
The move has created more than 60 new jobs, and comes less than six months after the company established a joint venture to build a French fry plant in Lipetsk, Russia to serve the Russian French fry market. This new plant will become operational by early 2018.
Lamb Weston/Meijer CEO Bas Albla concluded: “The joint venture with Belaya Dacha in June and this new production line in Bergen op Zoom reflect our ambition to meet the growing demand of high-quality potato products in a sustainable way.”
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2019