Farming News - Dale Farm announces a significant increases in profit

Dale Farm announces a significant increases in profit

Dale Farm, the largest UK farmer-owned dairy cooperative, has announced significant increases in profit, return on capital employed and turnover as part of its financial results for the year to the end of March - a fourth year of consistent growth in the group.

Group operating profit is up 18 per cent to £14.3 million, profit before tax up 19 per cent to £12 million. Overall group turnover grew 5.6 per cent to £509 million.

Dale has also secured a major three-year contract to supply leading food-on-the-go retailer Greggs with cheese, for use in its shops across the UK.

Dale Farm group chief executive Nick Whelan (pictured) said: “Our financial performance is measured by our ability to best support our farmer owners and, as such, our 2018/19 accounts are hugely positive.

“Our consistent profitable growth is the result of our people working together on an ambitious strategy in a culture of continuous improvement, a focus on product and process innovation and building partnerships with major customers across the UK, EU and beyond.

“I'm delighted to be able to report that Dale Farm has paid the leading milk price as per the 12-month rolling milk price league in Northern Ireland throughout this past financial year,” Nick Whelan said.

Having invested £30.2m into its facilities and operations over the last four years, Dale Farm this year reported a 15.8 per cent group return on capital employed for the group overall.

He added: “We continually assess and reinvest into every step of the production process to increase our operating efficiencies and in doing so, have achieved a return on capital well above the industry average.

“A vital ingredient in our success is the capability of our people, so we also invest heavily in developing talent to support the delivery of our growth trajectory. In addition, we have a fundamental belief in the evolution of the ‘Lean' culture across our group, which is a vital tool in helping us manage both significant ongoing cost inflation and address the impact of potential challenges, such as Brexit.

“Our cooperative ethos is underpinned by a long-term vision to support dairy farming across Northern Ireland and Great Britain and that will remain the driving force behind our development going forward.

“Success for Dale Farm means success for every dairy farmer within our membership as we look to strengthen our balance sheet, while at the same time paying the best milk price possible. This ethos has attracted a significant number of new members and suppliers over the past financial year with growth of over 7 per cent in our milk pool.”