It is estimated that the build cost of phase one of United Milk's new development will be in the region of £40-45m, of which half is to cover the cost of equipment. From a detailed trawl of over 20 suitable sites across the entire membership milk supply field, United Milk has identified one preferred site of over 30 acres in size and is currently in advanced negotiations with the site owner. Subject to concluding these negotiations, and to no unforeseen planning or building issues arising, it is anticipated that the project could be operational on this site by the fourth quarter of 2001.