21 June 2002

Dairy Crest plans creamery upgrade

DAIRY Crest is to invest £49m in expanding its Davidstow Creamery in north Cornwall, making it the UKs largest mature cheddar cheese plant.

The project is being part-funded with £4m from the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Objective One European funding programme, matched by £4m from DEFRA.

It will increase the cheese plants output by 66% to 55,000t a year by 2012, which will require an extra 140m litres of milk, taking the total annual supply to 460m litres.

This will allow the company to meet demand for Cathedral City and Davidstow branded cheddar, which has doubled in the past five years.

Executive managing director Drummond Hall said: "This offers a very good future for Cornish farmers, who continue to receive a very good price relative to other cheese producers or co-ops."

Work on the plant is expected to finish by the end of 2004. &#42