Müller Milk & Ingredients CEO Patrick Müller with Scottish athlete Eilidh Doyle at the Bellshill facility.
Müller Milk & Ingredients has invested £15 million to sustainably upgrade its fresh milk facility in Bellshill, Scotland.
The company said the project “represents the largest single investment in Scottish dairy processing for more than a decade” and gives the Bellshill site the capacity to process more than 370 million litres of fresh milk and cream each year with milk provided by 230 Scottish dairy farmers.
The project includes a new filling hall to make cream products, two additional fresh milk production lines, energy-efficient cooling systems and an extended chill space to increase capacity for finished products. It has secured 265 jobs.
With the future sustainability of the fresh milk processing sector being debated in the industry, the project is part of a plan by Müller to create a profitable, progressive and efficient fresh milk business in Britain, with new capabilities to make the next generation of fresh milk, cream and flavoured milk products.
The wholly owned on-site bottle manufacturing capability cuts down unnecessary movements of vehicles and gives Müller the means to further accelerate a reduction in the use of plastic and increase the use of recycled plastic in its bottles to a target of 50% by 2020. The company said it has now reached 40% recycled material use in its bottles.
Müller’s three-year programme to create a centre of excellence for dairy in Scotland at Bellshill involved the closure of outdated dairies in Aberdeen and East Kilbride.
Müller Milk & Ingredients CEO Patrick Müller said: “Fresh milk deserves to be celebrated. It’s a fantastic, healthy, natural product and an essential part of British life.
“Milk from our Bellshill dairy is sourced from local farmers who shape our landscape and our environment. It’s in fridges less than two days after leaving farms because of our investment in processing and logistics infrastructure.
“We are unique in Scotland in that our 100% recyclable packaging is not shipped in from miles away. It’s manufactured in an adjacent site before being directly passed to our filing lines.
“It’s clear however that in terms of profitability, the fresh milk sector has reached a tipping point. Change is required because if processing goes, it’s gone forever. We are confident that Müller will succeed in this environment because we are well invested, progressive and efficient.
“Müller has strategic partnerships with customers and farmers. This allows us to lead with a comprehensive agricultural and quality agenda and with innovative ways to avoid and recycle plastic.”
“Our employees deserve enormous credit for their work during this major project. Despite significant disruption on site and an exceptionally harsh winter in 2017/18 our team in Bellshill maintained a high level of performance throughout.”
Scottish track and field athlete Eilidh Doyle attended the inauguration of the new facility.
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2019