Arla, Dairy Farmers of America to build cheese plant in western NY

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BASKING RIDGE, N.J. — The international dairy company Arla and Dairy Farmers of America have created a $58 million joint venture to build a small dairy plant in western New York for cheddar cheese production.

The agreement, announced March 24, indicates eight DFA-member farms in western New York will supply the plant 70,000 tons of raw milk annually.

The joint venture will be owned 70 percent by DFA, who also holds the management role; 20 percent by Arla and 10 percent by the eight farmers who supply the milk, according to a company news release.

Arla Foods is owned by 12.700 farmers from Denmark, Sweden, the UK, Germany, Belgium, Luxemburg and the Netherlands. Dairy Farmers of America (DFA) is a national dairy marketing cooperative owned by more than 14,000 members.

The U.S. market has a restricted import quota system for cheddar, which is why Arla’s possibilities for importing European cheddar are limited and the company sought local production.

The construction of the site will begin in the fall and production is expected to start in the fall 2017.

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