Meiji, the Japanese food and pharmaceutical firm, has announced plans to invest ¥48 billion ($339 million) in the construction of a new dairy plant in Nakashibetsu, Hokkaido.
According to Meiji, the new facility will have an initial production capacity of 430,000 tons of raw milk annually, with the potential to reach 500,000 tons over time. The new 230,000 sq m plant will ultimately replace existing plants in Honbetsu and Nishi Shunbetsu.
The Nishi Shunbetsu facility produces non-fat dry milk, concentrated skimmed milk, butter, and cream. Honbetsu makes concentrated skimmed milk and cream. In addition to these products, the Nakashibetsu plant will make milk protein.
Meiji said its aim was to establish a plant that maximised automation and improved productivity. The company also plans to expand demand for its products, including by obtaining halal certification to promote exports.
Construction is expected to begin in April 2024 and the plant is projected to be operational by March 2027. Closure of the Nishi Shunbetsu and Honbetsu facilities is planned for 2027.
Source: FoodBev / Meiji