Glanbia Cheese Chief Executive Paul Vernon has confirmed he wants to continue to grow the company’s business in Northern Ireland.

“We are currently using 1.2 million litres of milk on a daily basis, one million of which is processed into mozzarella cheese at Magheralin, in Co Armagh, with the remainder going to our facility in Virginia, Co Cavan.

“This milk is secured from our own farm supply base and through additional procurement arrangements with other dairies.

“The cheese made at Magheralin is destined for the pizza sector in the UK and Europe. We currently supply 40% of the mozzarella cheese utilised on pizza’s in the UK and we see significant potential for future growth throughout Europe and the Rest of the World.”

Vernon continued: “We are committed to continuing to expand our producer base in Northern Ireland but this will only be achieved by delivering sustainable farm gate returns. We fully recognise the fact that every business has to be profitable, in order to ensure its own future.”

Glanbia Cheese is a joint partnership between Glanbia plc and the US cheese manufacturer Leprino Foods. Along with its corporate headquarters in Northwich, Cheshire, the company operates two state-of-the art mozzarella manufacturing facilities: one in Llangefni, North West Wales and the other in Magheralin.

“The locations not only provide outstanding logistical cheese manufacturing advantages but also enable us to source the highest quality milk for our cheese making business,” Vernon further explained.

He concluded: “The prospects for milk production in Northern Ireland are extremely bright. The demand for high quality food is set to grow substantially in countries around the world. And I see no reason why the local dairy sector cannot avail of these opportunities.”