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Union Continues to Liaise with Members Over Proposed Tullos Closure

Feasibility study for new milk processing plants to take place

NFU Scotland is continuing to seek a resolution to the proposed closure of the Tullos milk processing plant by Muller UK & Ireland.

North East regional representatives continue to meet with the core milk forum for the region which is representative of the membership, as well as the wider dairy producers in the area, to keep them abreast of ongoing talks.

At the end of March, Muller UK & Ireland, announced restructuring plans to wind down its processing operations at its Aberdeen dairy.

As detailed by Muller, all 43 farmers supplying the Aberdeen site would be offered the opportunity to continue supplying the business, however it would apply a 1.75 pence per litre transport charge for the non-aligned and Co-operative producers, to move the milk to Bellshill, near Glasgow, for processing. NFU Scotland understands that those on a direct contract with Tesco would see the retailer cover the transport charge.

A consultation period of 45 days is due to conclude mid-May.  Previously the Union called on Muller to pull its haulage cost plans and to work with dairy farmers to secure the future of the milk field in Aberdeenshire.

Since the announcement, various plans have been considered by the NFUS regional representatives, and at present the group has actioned a feasibility study through Opportunities North East to consider the viability of building a new plant in South Aberdeenshire.

NFU Scotland will be seeking further time on top of the consultation period for a further in-depth study and urges that the Tullos plant remains open at the end of the consultation period. The case will be presented to Muller in due course.

Jean McLean, Milk Committee representative for the North East commented: “We have held various discussions in recent weeks with producers in the region as well as food manufacturers who have expressed an interest in helping to fill the void in processing capacity that could be left if Muller close the plant.

“As part of our discussions, we are lobbying MPs to get behind the Union’s cause to convince retailers in Aberdeenshire to support local milk production and give a commitment to local sourcing if a local processing plant is established.

“There is a desire to preserve a strong milk field in the North East, and we are striving to do everything in our power to make sure it has a viable future.

“We will continue to drive forward the feasibility study, and seek to work with Muller UK & Ireland to stress that there remains a justifiable case for a milk processing plant in the North East.”

Ends

Contact Ruth McClean on 0131 472 4108
 

Date Published:

News Article No.: 109/16


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