Arla Foods is to manufacture retail packet butter at Westbury Dairies, from August 2011. The move follows the announcement in September that Arla Foods UK was to become a shareholder with First Milk and Milk Link in Westbury Dairies Limited.
All three parties have been examining ways in which the potential of the Westbury site can be developed and the board has agree that Arla Foods will operate the existing butter-making facility at the site.
Arla will also build a dedicated butter making and packing facility for retail products, in addition to continuing production of bulk butter. Circa 60 jobs will be created at Westbury Dairies as part of the initiative.
Historically, Arla’s retail own label butter has been produced at Settle, in North Yorkshire, as well as Götene in Sweden and Varde in Denmark. The move to produce butter at Westbury consolidates Arla’s UK own label butter requirements into one site, and significantly reduces food miles and transport costs.
Peter Lauritzen, CEO of Arla Foods UK plc comments: “Today’s announcement is strategically important for Arla by enhancing our environmental credentials in line with our carbon reduction strategy, and further reinforces our commitment to the UK.
“The initiative is also in line with our commitment to develop the potential of the Westbury facility and secure its long-term future.”
Westbury complements the business’s other major butter production facility at Holstebro in Denmark and, potentially, will result in the closure of production lines at Settle and Götene and the closure of the Varde site.
Arla Foods UK plc is home to some of the UK’s leading dairy brands including Cravendale, Lurpak and Anchor. Processing approximately two billion litres of milk a year Arla continues to be one of the UK’s leading dairy companies and a supplier of fresh liquid milk and cream to the top seven retailers.
Over 2,500 daily deliveries are made directly to stores nationwide and Arla brands can be found across the dairy category. As well as the leader of the butter, spreads and margarine sector, and a major supplier of other added value products including flavoured milk and cheese, Arla continues to build working relationships with Arla Foods Milk Partnership, a unique group of dairy farmers, which supplies around 90 per cent of Arla's total milk requirements.
Behind this leading business is a team of circa 2,800 people across the UK located at our dairies, distribution centres and head office.