The major cross-border dairy processing co-operative, Lakeland Dairies, has established a dedicated graduate development programme aimed at upcoming graduates from disciplines including food science, human nutrition, information technology, supply chain and logistics, engineering and agri-science.

Senior staff from the co-operative are currently visiting third-level institutions, north and south on an all-island basis, advising students and careers departments of the programme, which is designed to support the future growth and development of the Lakeland Dairies business.

Group chief executive Michael Hanley said: “Lakeland Dairies has an excellent and highly skilled workforce with strong business capability, research skills, technical expertise and experience. We want to sustain our continuing progress by offering excellent career development opportunities to talented young graduates from key agri-food related disciplines.

“The graduate programme is designed to enhance the organisational capacity of Lakeland Dairies as we pursue further growth and many positive new opportunities for the co-operative and for all of our milk producers in the future.”

The Lakeland Dairies graduate programme is specifically structured to provide entrants with the opportunity to enhance and develop their skills over a two-year period. They will complete rotational placements in appropriate functions and departments within the business, relevant to their discipline. In parallel with that, they will complete a Diploma in Management in conjunction with the Irish Management Institute.

Each participant will be assigned a mentor in the relevant departments for support and advice together with ongoing contact, support and assistance from a graduate programme co-ordinator to review and discuss progress.

Lakeland Dairies is one of Ireland’s leading dairy processing co-operatives with annual revenues of more than €470m. Lakeland collects and processes over 700 million litres of milk annually from local dairy farmers. It offers 170 dairy foodservice and food ingredient products in more than 70 countries worldwide, exporting close to 100 per cent of its entire production capacity to global markets.

Further information on the Programme can be obtained from Lucia O’Neill, Graduate Programme Co-Ordinator at (049) 4364348 or email [email protected].

Pictured at the recent Lakeland Dairies information seminar on graduate programme opportunities for University of Limerick students were from left: Michael Murray, Trim, Co. Meath; Catherine Smith, HR Manager, Lakeland Dairies; Eoghan Griffin, Dingle, Co. Kerry; Lucia O’Neill (Lakeland Graduate Programme Co-ordinator) and Anne O’Connor, Careers Advisor, University of Limerick