Royal A-ware, a leading global cheese and dairy producer in The Netherlands, and Glanbia Ireland, Ireland’s largest dairy processor, have announced plans to enter a strategic partnership that proposes to build a new continental cheese manufacturing facility in Co Kilkenny.
It is envisaged that a total of £125m will be invested in this best-in-class facility.
The new facility is scheduled for commissioning in 2022 and will produce continental cheeses in various formats. It will be located on a site adjacent to Glanbia’s existing infant formula powder manufacturing factory at Belview. Once fully commissioned, the new cheese facility will have the capacity to process 450m litres of milk per annum.
Approximately 80 full time jobs will be created at the facility. It is expected that a further 100 temporary jobs will be created during the construction phase.
Milk used in the production process on site will be sourced from Glanbia suppliers and the cheese will be marketed and sold to global customers.
Welcoming the announcement Michael Creed TD, Ireland’s Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, said: “The agri-food sector is Ireland’s largest indigenous industry supporting over 174,000 jobs across rural Ireland, from farms to food processing. Investments like this cheese manufacturing facility in Belview are a critical response to the challenges posed by Brexit, in terms of developing new products and new markets.”
Jan Anker, Chief Executive of Royal A-Ware Group, added: “We are proud to announce this partnership with Glanbia Ireland. With this announcement, Royal A-ware is taking another step towards achieving its goals of working with strategic partners to build innovative and sustainable agri-food chains and offering its customers an enhanced product portfolio. It also gives our company access to additional volumes of high-quality cheese through a local supply chain.”
Jim Bergin, Chief Executive of Glanbia Ireland commented: “We are delighted to partner with Royal A-ware, a leading global producer of continental cheeses, to build a world-class cheese plant in the south-east of Ireland. This new partnership will create a new route to market for Glanbia Ireland suppliers’ milk and diversify our portfolio of consumer dairy products and ingredients.
“Since 2014 we have invested €343m to facilitate a 42% increase in milk production by Glanbia farmers. This proposed new investment is now required to diversify our product mix and to ensure that our suppliers have the opportunity to fulfil their growth ambitions.”