Farm Ireland
Independent.ie

Wednesday 22 November 2017

'Critical time' for Carbery says CEO

Dan MacSweeney, Chief Executive Officer, Carbery Group
Dan MacSweeney, Chief Executive Officer, Carbery Group

THE head of the Carbery Group, Dan MacSweeney, says it as a "critical time" for the business with major challenges arising from Brexit for the Co Cork-headquartered international food ingredients, flavours and cheese manufacturer.

The chief executive confirmed it will be business as usual as he confirmed his retirement at the end of December after 25 years in the role.

"We have a lot of decisions to make over the next while," he said, with planning underway for for all potential Brexit scenarios.

"Since the referendum last year we've had a very active approach to Brexit," he said.

Carbery, which had a turnover of €340m in 2016, is owned by four Irish co-operatives, Bandon, Barryroe, Drinagh and Lisavaird, and employs close to 600 people. Carbery's facility in Ballineen produces almost a quarter of Ireland's annual cheese output, and it operates from eight locations including Ireland, the UK, the USA, Brazil and Thailand.

Diversification

Mr MacSweeney said the west Cork dairy industry was "really rooted" in the co-op sector. However, he stressed the business is "broadbased and risk has been diversified" over the years, as it now operates across four continents supplying close to 40 international markets.

The firm has worked hard to add as much value as possible to the milk pool with a strong cheese and nutritionals business based on whey protein concentrates and isolates destined mainly for infant formulae, sports and clinical nutrition and other functional foods.

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He said the decision to invest in the flavours sector was key for the business with Carbery building an international business Synergy.

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