Ireland-based dairy and sports nutrition group Glanbia has joined forces with Dutch cheese and dairy producer Royal A-ware on a plan to build a new EUR140m (US$159m) facility making continental cheese.

The planned facility in Belview, Co. Kilkenny, Ireland, will create 80 permanent jobs and a further 100 temporary jobs during the construction phase.

The new facility is scheduled for commissioning in 2022 and will produce continental cheese gouda and edam in various formats.

Once fully commissioned, the new facility will have a production capacity of 450m litres of milk per annum.  

Milk used in the production process on site will be sourced from local suppliers and the cheese will be marketed and sold to global customers in the retail, foodservice and industrial channels.

Jim Bergin, chief executive of Glanbia’s domestic unit, said: “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. 

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“Since 2014 we have invested EUR343m 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.”

Jan Anker, chief executive of Royal A-ware Group, said: “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.”

The proposed new facility will be located at a greenfield site near to a Glanbia infant nutrition plant which opened in 2015.

This is currently the subject of a EUR130m investment to install a third drier and expand production capacity.