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New artigarvan lp dairy technology centre will double capacity and fuel further global growth for lacpatrick co-op

Enda Gallen, International Sales Manager, Gabriel D’Arcy, LacPatrick’s Chief Executive, Alan McCay Farmer’Supplier and Board Member and Eamonn O’Malley, General Manager at Artigarvan pictured at the official opening of the company’s 30,000 sq ft state-of-the-art Dairy Technology Centre which it has described as one of the most innovative and modern facilities of its kind in the European dairy industry. Costing over £30m, the new facility at its Artigarvan plant, which houses a leading edge new Evaporation and Spray Drying Technology capable of making advanced dairy ingredients for LacPatrick’s rapidly expanding markets in Europe, Middle East, Africa and Asia. The company have created 20 new high-quality jobs with the potential to grow the co-ops global sales.

Monday, Sept 11, 2017

£30M facility creates 20 new high-quality jobs and has potential to grow co-op’s global sales

LacPatrick Co-op will today unveil a 30,000 sq ft state-of-the-art Dairy Technology Centre which it has described as one of the most innovative and modern facilities of its kind in the European dairy industry.

Costing over £30m, the new facility at its Artigarvan plant, houses a leading edge new Evaporation and Spray Drying Technology capable of making advanced dairy ingredients for LacPatrick’s rapidly expanding markets in Europe, Middle East, Africa and Asia.

LacPatrick’s Chief Executive, Gabriel D’Arcy said the new Dairy Technology Centre would double the site’s capacity and has the potential to significantly increase the product portfolio and company turnover in the years ahead.

“This is one of the most exciting innovations and investments within the dairy sector and positions LacPatrick as one of the largest producer of dairy ingredients in the UK. Not only does it make us self-sufficient in terms of processing our own milk pool but it means we can now also assist other processors with additional high end milk,” he said today.

The new facility took 18 months to build and has created an additional 20 highly-skilled technical posts for the LacPatrick group, most of which will be based at Artigarvan. More than 70 people are now employed at Artigarvan.

“This cutting-edge investment is an important part of LacPatrick’s measured growth strategy and we envisage further major announcements during the next five year period as we consolidate our position as a leader within the Northern Ireland dairy industry.

Alan McCay Farmer ‘Supplier and LacPatrick, Board Member, Eamonn O’Malley, General Manager at Artigarvan , Gabriel D’Arcy, LacPatrick’s Chief Executive and Enda Gallen, International Sales Manager, pictured at the official opening of the company’s 30,000 sq ft state-of-the-art Dairy Technology Centre which it has described as one of the most innovative and modern facilities of its kind in the European dairy industry. Costing over £30m, the new facility at its Artigarvan plant, which houses a leading edge new Evaporation and Spray Drying Technology capable of making advanced dairy ingredients for LacPatrick’s rapidly expanding markets in Europe, Middle East, Africa and Asia. The company have created 20 new high-quality jobs with the potential to grow the co-ops global sales.

“Given the uncertainty presented by Brexit, having three strategically-located, world-class facilities both North and South of the border positions us in a stronger competitive position to deal with any Brexit consequences. This market resilience is particularly important as LacPatrick is a local company with a growing global reach with our products being found on shelves throughout the UK and Ireland and beyond in places such as Africa, Middle East, Far East Australia,” Gabriel added.

The LP Dairy Technology Centre was officially opened on Tuesday, 12th of September and the event was attended by LacPatrick board members, employees, customers, suppliers and their families.


Welcome to the August Edition of LacPatrick News


In this issue, we have an update on the formal handover of the LP Dairy Technology Centre in Artigarvan from GEA. We have some important events to add to your calendar. We have some helpful advice articles from Cellcheck on AMR and the rise of summer SCC. Lastly, we take a closer look at some o the farming methods successfully adopted by LacPatrick suppliers.

Click to download the August Newsletter


Commissioning Phase Complete at Artigarvan LP Dairy Technology Centre

peter-nielson-eamon-omalleyePictured: L to R – GEA Acceptance Certificate hand-over with Peter V. Nielsen, GEA (left) and Eamonn O’ Malley, LacPatrick.Since LacPatrick announced the £30m investment in its new LP Dairy Technology Centre it has been a whirlwind two years with a hugely successful outcome. Early this month, GEA, one of the largest suppliers of process technology for the food industry, formally handed over the running of the plant to the team at LacPatrick.

Speaking about the GEA handover, Eamonn O’Malley, Artigarvan General Manager, said: “The positive working relationship between GEA and LacPatrick set the site up for a great result from the beginning. GEA are experts at building large-scale facilities that respond to the dairy industry needs. From project conception, they worked closely with the team at LacPatrick to ensure that the new LP Dairy Technology Centre was designed and engineered to meet strict hygiene, food safety and quality standards, while operating efficiently and sustainably. Peter and the team at GEA were a pleasure to work with and we are hugely grateful for their input into the new site.”
Explaining why the new site is so special, Eamonn added: “The new facility has one of the lowest carbon footprints of its kind in Western Europe and has more than doubled LacPatrick’s capacity to meet the demands of emerging markets in S.E. Asia and Africa. LacPatrick is now the largest producer of spray dried milk in the UK and is now completely self-sufficient to process its own milk pool plus we can assist other creameries with additional milk during peak season, which was never possible before”.

“The new 7T/Hr dryer, known locally as Niro 3, has been proven to produce a range of unique and innovative dairy ingredients such as instantised powders and low spore powders, with future development planned. The uniqueness of the new equipment allows the dryer to continue producing powder 24 hours a day for up to 28 days without stopping where the existing dryers must be washed every 20 hours, making it vastly more efficient. Also, when processing whole milk on Niro 3, the site’s capacity has now increased from 5 tons/hour on existing dryers to a total of 12 tons/hour on the new system.

“Lastly, I would like to take the opportunity to commend the work of the management and staff at the Artigarvan site. The team’s drive, spirit, willingness to go the extra mile, and their commitment to health and safety standards were never-ending throughout the project. The entire team is extremely proud of the new facility and we greatly look forward to showing it off to our supplier farmers at the supplier open day in September!”

LacPatrick is the Cream of the Crop in UAE

cream-of-the-cropLacPatrick has secured in excess of £1m of sales of its LP spray dried whole milk and skimmed milk powder in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), following participation at Gulfood in February 2017.

Welcoming the deals, Steve Harper, Invest NI’s Executive Director of International Business said: “LacPatrick has used Invest NI support to make impressive strides in securing this new export business in the UAE. As well as exhibiting on the NI stand at this major food event, the company has worked with our in market team for a number of years to help identify new trade opportunities”.

Enda Gallen, International Sales Manager for LacPatrick said: “The UAE and the Middle East are very important markets for our business and we are delighted with our progress to date.
“Participating at Gulfood was an excellent opportunity to nurture existing relationships and meet with potential new customers. We had been working on a number of deals in the weeks leading up to Gulfood and being able to meet face-to-face with customers allowed us to get the deals successfully over the line. Invest NI’s support in facilitating and helping to set up these meetings was extremely beneficial”.

“Securing new customers is a very important development for our business and has opened new avenues with which to sell our product ranges, particularly the high quality milk powders which are produced at our new state-of-the-art LP Dairy Technology Centre in Artigarvan. We have also been able to secure significant further orders with existing customers, which is an excellent development and something we will continue to build on.”

Nigel Kemps retires after many successful years at LacPatrick

nigel-kempAfter just over 20 years with both former Ballyrashane Creamery and LacPatrick Dairies, Nigel Kemps retired from the business on the 31st of July, 2017.

Nigel began his career with Ballyrashane Creamery in 1997 as Deputy Manager of Operations. He progressed to General Site Manager and more recently played a key role in the merger of former Town of Monaghan and Ballyrashane Creamery. Since then he has been instrumental in the integration of both businesses, assisting with coordinating activities for a smooth transition with its staff, customers and suppliers while leading the Farm Liaison team for the LacPatrick business.

Commenting on Nigel’s retirement, Gabriel D’Arcy, Chief Executive Officer, said: “I would like to take this opportunity to thank Nigel for his significant commitment and contribution to LacPatrick over the years. On behalf of the company and the many staff who had the pleasure of working with him, we wish Nigel good health and every happiness for the future”.

KT Heavy Soils Drainage Event



  • Event Time: Wednesday 30 August 2017 @ 11am
  • Venue: on the farm of James McMahon, Faltagh, Swanscross, Co.Monaghan

Speakers will include

Moorepark/Johnstown Castle researchers :

  • Pat Tuohy
  • Owen Fenton
  • James O’Loughlin
  • David Wall

Demonstrations based on site investigation, drainage design & costing

AMR: The need to act NOW

EU Milk Notice to Milk Producers (ROI ONLY)GUEST CONTIBUTOR

Hazel Sheridan, Medicines Division, Department of Food and the Marine, Backweston, Co.Kildare

What is AMR?

Antimicrobial resistance, or AMR, is a term used to describe a situation where a medicine that used to work, no longer works. The most common form of AMR is resistance by bacteria to antibiotics. However, there are other forms e.g. resistance of viruses to antiviral medicines.

Bacteria have been on this planet a lot longer than we have. They have not been able to do this without developing effective methods of survival. One of the methods they have developed is the ability, when exposed to antibiotics, to become resistant to their effects. Not only can they do this for themselves, they can pass on this ability to other bacteria that were never exposed to the antibiotic.

AMR is a natural phenomenon. It cannot be prevented. However, the pace at which it is developing has increased rapidly in recent years because too many antibiotics are being used in both the human health and animal sectors, not just here in Ireland, but at the global level.

Why does AMR matter?

Since their discovery in 1928, antibiotics have very much improved the quality of all our lives. We take this benefit for granted, and like our health, we will not know it’s true value until it is gone, and then it will be too late. Treatments such as surgeries, cancer treatments, care of premature babies etc, would not be possible if we could not control the growth of bacteria using antibiotics. Antibiotics also mean that our older family and friends are not left suffering from chronic conditions that would severely affect their quality of life, and it means that we too, when we have a bacterial infection, have access to pills that in 24 hours can have us feeling an awful lot better. Just think back to the last time you or a family member used an antibiotic. How did you/they feel before the antibiotic was used? How did you/they feel after? Imagine if we no longer had access to these medicines?

How can I play my part?

Medical practitioners alone cannot fix this problem; farmers alone cannot fix this problem; the public alone cannot fix this problem. We all need to work together if we are to avert this crisis. For those involved with animals, this means doing everything we can to prevent the outbreaks of bacterial infections in our animals. It means using vaccination to prevent outbreaks of viral infections, as viral infections suppress human and animal immunity and make us all much more susceptible to bacterial infections. It means washing our hands. It means regularly cleaning and disinfecting any equipment that comes in contact with animals. It means isolating sick animals, and when we or our animals are sick, sticking to the 5 R’s:

  • Get the right advice.
  • Treat the right animal or person. Never take an antibiotic that has not been prescribed for you, or give an antibiotic to an animal for which it has not been prescribed.
  • Understand that the right antibiotic to use is the simplest, most narrow spectrum antibiotic that will work for the particular infection.
  • Adhere to the right dose and the right duration of treatment i.e. that which is recorded on the prescription or medicine label.

If we do not act now, the choice may very well be taken out of our hands, whether that is by Nature herself, or by those who will be forced to act to protect all our futures.

Cell Check of the month

cell-health-check-bannerDon’t ignore a summer SCC rise!

Is your bulk tank somatic cell count (SCC) starting to creep up slightly? If so, don’t ignore it! It is likely to be because the number of infected quarters in your herd is starting to increase a little, which in turn can lead to more infected quarters, and so on. High herd SCC in late lactation is generally because of spread of infection during the summer, not ‘just late lactation’. Don’t assume that small bulk tank SCC increases during the summer will ‘settle down’- act now, and set your herd up for late lactation, with minimal mastitis infections and maximum milk production.

Despite an annual improvement in the average SCC of herds over the last few years, we still consistently see herd SCCs starting to rise from early summer. It then usually continues to creep up for the rest of the year. The financial impact of a ‘creeping’ SCC should not be underestimated. For example, at a milk price of 30c/L, if the average bulk tank SCC of a 100-cow herd increases from 150,000 cells/mL to 250,000 cells/mL, it reduces the overall farm profit by approx. €8,200. An additional €4,000 of extra profit is lost if the bulk tank SCC increases from 250,000
cells/mL to 350,000 cells/mL.

What to do?

Milk record the whole herd now, and identify any high SCC cows i.e. SCC>200,000cells/mL

  1. These high SCC cows should be marked and milked last to minimise disease spread.
  2. Discuss a treatment plan with your vet – while treatment may appear to be the most logical option, remember that cure rates can range from 20-80% depending on various factors, such as the bacteria involved, the duration of infection and the cow’s lactation number.
  3. Remove the source of infection – Dry off individual quarters i.e. simply stop milking it, do NOT use a dry cow tube. Consider culling if the cow is a repeat offender i.e. high SCC in two consecutive lactations.

For full details on dealing with high SCC cows, see Management Note M in the
CellCheck Farm Guidelines for Mastitis Control.

Dairy Innovation in Practice

AFBI Dairy Farm Walks 12- 14 September 2017

EU Milk Notice to Milk Producers (ROI ONLY)The Agri-Food and Biosciences Institute (AFBI) will host a series of three farm walks from the 12th to 14th September in Banbridge, Enniskillen and Newtownstewart.
These ‘must attend’ events will demonstrate how adopting the latest research results can improve the profitability of your farm.


Everyone who wishes to attend must pre-register for a starting time slot, otherwise entry cannot be guaranteed. You can register online at or by phoning 02890 255 636. Tours will commence at 30 minute intervals between 10.30am and 12.00

  • 12th September- Banbridge, Co Down
    • (Ian McClelland, 64 Moss Road, Banbridge, BT32 3NZ)
  • 13th September- Enniskillen, Co. Fermanagh
    • (Aidan McManus, Cloniff, Macken, Enniskillen, BT92 3BP)
  • 14th September- Newtownstewart, Co. Tyrone
    • (David Hunter, 43 Droit Road, Newtownstewart, BT78 4DS)
  • Topics to be addressed include dairy cow health, winter feeding-controlling costs, back to basics in calf rearing, making the most from grass, and maintaining productive soils and swards. By pre-registering you will automatically receive complimentary light refreshments at the end of the farm walk. In the interest of biosecurity, those attending are asked to wear clean clothing and footwear not normally used on farm.

Another Successful Castleblaney Show

castleblaney Pictured is Dean O’Neill, LacPatrick Farm Quality Advisor, presenting an award to a young handler.

On Monday, the 7th of August, the Castleblayney Show attracted an attendance of approximately 10,000 visitors from the local, national and international areas. Agriculture is the shows main focus but this has broadened over the past years and the recent event included side shows, trade stands, the All-Ireland baking championship, the All-Ireland junior cook final, an artisan food hall showcasing local produce at its very best, and much, much more.