An Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar TD, has officially opened a new €3.75 million Feed Mill Extension at Drinagh Co-Op.
Founded in 1923, Drinagh Co-Op is a dairy and agribusiness co-operative based in the heart of West Cork. The Co-Op services 550 milk producers, with a total annual production of 190 million litres of milk and also services 1,500 other farmers. This timely investment is particularly important given the need to cater for increased milk output which resulted from the removal of milk quotas in 2015. It also comes at a difficult time for farmers given the current drought conditions, as grass growth is seriously impaired.
Speaking at the Drinagh Co-Op event today, An Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar TD said, “I’m delighted to be here to officially open this €3.75 million Feed Mill Extension at Drinagh Co-Op. Currently, the agricultural sector across Ireland finds itself in a difficult situation owing to recent drought conditions. Given the importance of the agricultural sector in Ireland, and particularly here in West Cork, I would like to pay tribute to businesses like Drinagh Co-Op for taking the initiative by making significant investments in innovative technologies in response to a growing need for animal fodder.”
Speaking on behalf of the Board of Directors of Drinagh Co-Op, TJ Sullivan, Chairman of the Board said, “I am delighted to welcome the Mayor of the County of Cork, Cllr. Patrick Gerard Murphy and An Taoiseach to join us today to mark this significant occasion. In 2016, we made a decision to make this investment in our Feed Mill, following the removal of milk quotas in 2015. By increasing production capacity at our Mill, we will be able to double output to 120,000 tonnes per annum.
“The additional capacity that this investment provides allows us to meet increasing demand from our customers. As you know, farmers have been experiencing a fodder crisis since the Spring which has been compounded by a drought over the Summer. Increasing production output at our Feed Mill also allows us to assist other co-ops and millers during high demand periods”, concluded Mr. Sullivan.
Drinagh Co-Op is owned by its 2,000 shareholders and employs a staff of 260. The business operates across hardware, electrical and agri inputs, pharmacies and animal feed milling. Drinagh Co-Op’s milk is processed at Carbery Food Ingredients Ltd., based in Ballineen, Co. Cork. Drinagh Co-Op owns 35% of Carbery.