Strong cheese sales are welcome boost for West dairy sector
“Innovation continues to shape the business and we have recently launched exciting new products in all of our categories,” he explained.
“We understand the importance of staying ahead of the market and ensuring we are meeting consumers’ needs. Food provenance, health and wellbeing are core themes which we will continue to focus on.”
Across Dairy Crest’s other brands, volumes of Country Life butter fell by 16% over the period, while revenue was reduced by 4%. However, the firm expects an improved performance in the second half of the year, supported by an onpack promotion with English Heritage.
Sale volumes and revenue of Frylight were down by about 20%, the figures also revealed, with consumers frying less during the summer heatwave.
It comes as earlier this year the British-owned firm announced an £85 million investment in growing the capacity of its cheese business, £75 million of which will be invested in the Davidstow Creamery.
The investment will enable Dairy Crest to process an additional 200 million litres of milk every year, increasing the company’s annual cheese production capacity from 54,000 tonnes to 77,000 tonnes over the next four to five years. The company’s whey production at the site, largely used for the global infant formula market, will grow proportionally.
This increase in capacity at Davidstow, which employs around 200 people, will enable Dairy Crest to respond to the growing cheese market in the UK, including convenience and snacking products, and on growing demand internationally in Europe, China, the US and the Far East.
Mr Allen added: “Our investment at Davidstow is progressing as planned. We are pursuing a number of opportunities to take Cathedral City into new international markets as well as deepen its penetration into existing domestic channels, capitalising on its status as one of the UK’s top ten brands according to YouGov. We are confident in delivering our expectations for the full year.”