DENMARK – Arla Foods will be investing €80 million (US$88.15 million) in expanding production capacity of its Branderup Dairy mozzarella production plant in Denmark.

The expansion project is scheduled to begin early 2020. It will include expanding the milk weighing capacity, milk silo inventory, milk processing area, storage capacity and add a cheese production line.

The investment will increase the annual production with 53 million kilos of mozzarella, which more than doubles the current mozzarella production, so that Branderup Dairy in the future will produce 91 million kilos of mozzarella per year.

“We are very proud of our production of high quality mozzarella at Branderup Dairy and it is a very gratifying that a growing demand for our products now means that we must more than double our production,”says Rene Nørgaard, Senior Director of Arla’s mozzarella production.

Increasing mozzarella cheese market

Arla’s mozzarella production in Denmark is concentrated on Branderup and Rødkærsbro Dairies from where the cheeses are shipped worldwide to about 100 countries worldwide.

Arla says that the success has been partly driven by developing regions around the world demanding more cheese as fast food products such as pizza are growing worldwide.

As demand continues to surge, Arla expects the European mozzarella cheese market to increase from around 650.000 tonnes in 2019 to 720.000 tonnes by 2022.

The expansion will enable the company to meet the growing demand and “create the future of dairy”, further confirming Arla as a leader on the world stage in the production of mozzarella.

“An expansion of this size places Arla in the forefront as one of the world’s leading producers of mozzarella cheese and gives us the opportunity to build on that position as a supplier of high quality mozzarella in Europe, Asia, USA and the Middle East,” says Sami Naffakh, Executive Vice President for Supply Chain.

Sustainable expansion

Arla said that the new investment will enhance the use of new and more sustainable technology.

Going forward the dairy will reduce its use of water significantly and the expansion ensures that the dairy also can invest in green energy solutions in the future.

“At Arla, we work with sustainability in all aspects of dairy production from the farm to the consumer.

“We also assume this responsibility at Branderup Dairy and therefore we aim to reuse as much water as possible, and will use the latest energy-optimized equipment for the expansion, ”says Rene Nørgaard.

Focusing on water reuse and other production improvements is another step on the road towards Arla’s climate goal of reducing total CO2 emissions by 30 percent by 2030 compared to 2015, and becoming CO2 neutral in 2050.

The design phase of the construction is already happening and the work itself will begin in early 2020. The expansion of Branderup Dairy is expected to be completed in the summer of 2021.