By Justin Coleman, Moy Park Agri Business and Live Production Services Director
Moy Park’s ongoing strategic investment programme is focused on enhancing operations across our agriculture and processing facilities and last year we invested over £40 million as part of this strategy – boosting production to a record 6 million birds per week in response to growing customer demand, for the first time in our 75 year history.
Recently, we announced an investment of over £18 million across a number of sites in Lincolnshire. At our Anwick facility, Moy Park has completed a £6 million investment which saw a refresh of the factory’s layout and installation of state-of-the-art equipment, including robotic and automation technology.
A £12 million investment is also underway at the nearby Grantham facility which will see the installation of new, high-tech mixing and processing equipment as well as the creation of Moy Park’s first fully contained “Free From” factory within the Grantham site.
Many consumers take a holistic view to health and healthy eating, and the growth of free-from categories is one area which exemplifies this. Whilst only small numbers of consumers actually suffer from a food allergy, far greater numbers are changing their eating behaviour for health reasons; 5% of consumers suffer from gluten intolerance, but 30% say that they have eaten a gluten free product in the last six months. This level of interest is continuing to drive double digit growth in the market and, with interest in gluten free highest amongst younger shoppers, this is a trend which we expect to continue to develop for many years.
These latest investments are further evidence of Moy Park’s continued growth and follow the opening of a £20 million state-of-the-art hatchery at Newark-on-Trent in Nottinghamshire. Hatching 2.5 million chicks per week, it is the largest single-build hatchery in the UK.
Moy Park is committed to developing its business and driving investment in our production facilities. We would anticipate that customer and consumer trends will continue to underpin future investment in this area, and we are focussed on ensuring we meet and exceed those expectations at all times.
These investments in state of the art processes have enabled us to take another large step forward as a business.