Calls for large turnout

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Ahead of a special general meeting (SGM) on Tuesday 23 October in the Glenavon House Hotel, Cookstown, Co Tyrone, LacPatrick shareholders have been urged to turnout in large numbers to support the merger with Lakeland Dairies. Registration opens at 12.30pm on Tuesday 23 October.

Speaking ahead of the SGM, LacPatrick Dairies chairman Andrew McConkey said: “Together with the rest of your Board, I am personally asking you to come out and vote in favour of this merger. It is essential for you, the LacPatrick shareholder, to turn out to support this important merger at the SGM.

“A yes vote on Tuesday 23 October is a vote for security, is a vote for strong and sustainable milk prices, is a vote for the ability to make long-lasting business decisions and is a vote for unity. With Lakeland, together we are stronger.

“The new Society will continue to be farmer-owned and farmer-controlled while paying a sustainable and competitive milk price in line with market conditions into the future. That is our absolute priority throughout this development.”

Lakeland Dairies and LacPatrick Dairies announced earlier this month that they had reached agreement to merge following the unanimous approval of the Boards of both co-operative societies who are both recommending the proposed merger to their respective shareholders.

“Each of the societies has invested in processing scale and state-of-the art-technology over the past decade and each serves their own specific group of customers throughout the world. Each makes a major economic contribution to rural development and the wellbeing of rural communities throughout their operating regions.

“With 3,200 suppliers, the merged co-operatives will process over 1.8bn litres of milk annually and will have annual revenues of over €1bn. The combined organisation will have substantial cashflow to underpin the development of the business. It will also create efficiencies across the organisation and its operations and this will enhance the value and return from of the merged societies for the benefit of all members.

“The business will have considerable potential to increase revenues and generate the cost savings necessary to ensure competitive market returns for dairy farmers in the future. The combined co-operative will be a competitive, international dairy food business,” Andrew McConkey added.

LacPatrick Dairies will hold its SGM in Cookstown, Co. Tyrone on Tuesday 23 October with registration open from 12.30om while Lakeland Dairies will hold its SGM in the Hotel Kilmore, Co Cavan the same day. Only shareholders can attend the meetings and vote.

The Boards of both co-operative societies are unanimously recommending shareholders to vote in favour of the merger.