MLC enters infant formula sector with Synutra supply deal

MLC enters infant formula sector with Synutra supply deal

Les Maîtres Laitiers du Cotentin (MLC) has signed a contract to supply Chinese infant formula firm Synutra International that will see the French dairy build a production plant in Normandy.

It will invest EUR114m (US$127.7m) in the site, to be located in Méautis. The project is expected to lead to the creation of 200 jobs, a spokesperson for MLC confirmed to just-food today.

The move marks the co-operative's entry into the infant formula segment.

"We are hoping construction work on the plant will begin soon and the first shipment of products to China is expected in April 2017," the spokesperson added.

When operational, the plant will have the capacity to process 90m litres of milk annually, allowing MLC to turn out 690m 20 cl units of infant formula. MLC will also transfer its AOC butter and cream production to the plant from a facility deemed obsolete.

Synutra is already building facilities for infant formula in Carhaix, in Brittany, in partnership with Sodiaal.