Sainsbury’s hails new Welsh meat plant

Meat processing company Dunbia has furthered its commitment to food sustainability with a new plant in Wales, Sainsbury’s chief executive Justin King said.

King was speaking at the launch of the new meat processing facility on Friday, 7 June, in Llanybydder, Wales. Around £12m has been spent on the new facility and it is claimed to be one of the most modern developments in Europe.

Dunbia has fitted the plant with state-of-the-art equipment including a new refrigeration system, which is 40% more efficient compared to “traditional methods”. Other innovations include a new deboning system that delivers a superior yield compared to competitors and has doubled processing capabilities at the site.

“We are proud backers of Welsh lamb, two thirds of all our British lamb comes from this facility,” King said. “The new facility demonstrates Dunbia’s strong commitment to British food sustainability. Sainsbury’s has been involved throughout the development of the facility, which will help us meet our target of doubling our sales of British food by 2020.”

The new site has taken on 75 new staff, bringing the total number of employees in the region up to 600, making it a major employer in the country and a big contributor to the wider Welsh economy.

Such is the importance of the plant to the economy, the Welsh government provided a £2.71m grant towards the plant. Welsh first minister Carwyn Jones said: “As one of Europe’s leading food companies, Dunbia plays an important role as a local employer in boosting the region’s economy as well as generating business back to Wales through its export business.”

He also said the Welsh government would continue to “work in partnership” with the company, to ensure the developments of new markets and a sustainable and successful industry for Wales.

Meanwhile, group manager for Dunbia Jim Dobson explained that he was confident the increased capacity of the site would help to further grow the business in the UK and abroad. “I am excited about the future for this site,” he said.