Glanbia’s €200m plant to create 400 building jobs

Dairy and food ingredients group Glanbia has been granted planning permission for a €200m milk processing plant at Belview Port in south Kilkenny, which is expected to employ 400 people during construction and more than 100 full-time staff upon completion.

When completed, Belview is expected to be two-thirds the size of Glanbia’s facility in Ballyragget, which is the largest integrated dairy processing facility in Europe.

Belview is expected to have two 7.5-tonne driers, with capacity for up to 19m litres per week.

A Glanbia spokesperson said the company welcomed the decision, and that the full implications of Kilkenny County Council’s planning approval — subject to certain conditions — would be detailed at the company’s 2012 half-year results press briefing in Kilkenny tomorrow.

Much of this information is likely to revolve around how Glanbia will manage the new Belview facility, which is expected to be operated as a 60:40 joint venture between the Co-op and the Plc.

It’s understood that talks on this are already concluded and that the details of the joint venture will be spelt out at tomorrow’s briefing.

The co-op has 54.4% of the Plc, but the expectation is that farmer shareholders could have to cash in as much as 15% of their shares to get the money to fund the development of Belview — which dairy sector sources estimate at being around €200m — and so lose some control of the Plc.

In its conditional planning approval notice, Kilkenny County Council notes that the new Belview facility will incorporate a 11m high two-storey administration and laboratory building sized 1,585 sq m, a 42.5m high five-storey production building sized 19,560 sq m and a series of other large industrial buildings.

The total buildings area is 24,597 sq m approximately. The total development is located on a site encompassing an overall area of 51.01 acres (20.64 hectares approx).

The development consists of an activity for which an Integrated Pollution Control Licence under Part IV of the Environment Protection Agency Act, 1992 to 2011, is required.

An Environmental Impact Statement and a Natura Impact Statement will be submitted to the planning authority with the application.

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