Lactalis today (13 May) began consultations with workers after it confirmed plans to transfer fromage frais production from its plant in Nicolait, Sarrebourg, to a plant in Lisieux, Normandy, by the end of the year.

The French dairy group acquired regional co-operative Unicoolait’s shareholding in Nicolait two years ago. In return, the co-op obtained an exclusivity clause for supplies until 2025 and a guarantee on milk prices until 2012. Unicoolait collects 110m litres of milk annually.

Employing 130 staff, the Nicolait facility turns out approximately 30,000 tonnes of flavoured fromages blancs, petits suisses and cream annually.

A Lactalis spokesman told just-food that the restructuring plans for Nicolait will be presented at a works council meeting taking place at the plant today.

No information has been disclosed on the transfer’s impact on jobs but milk collection, pasteurization and concentration operations are set to be continue at the Sarrebourg site.