Business news

Dale Farm profits rise for third year running

Posted By:
Dale Farm Co-operative Ltd.

28th Jun 2024

Dairy cooperative Dale Farm has recorded strong results for the financial year ending March 2024. Net profit before tax is up at £29.8m (previous year £26.8m), an increase of 11%, while the cooperative’s EBITDA (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation) have also increased, rising to £44.9m (previous year £43m). With group turnover of £631.4m for the past financial year, Dale Farm has improved its turnover to profit ratio.

In May 2024 Dale Farm announced a major investment of £70m in its cheddar processing facility at Dunmanbridge, Co. Tyrone, one of the largest investments of its kind by a Northern Ireland agri-food company.

The results mark the third successive year of increased profits for the farmer-owned dairy cooperative, something Group Chief Executive Nick Whelan puts down to strategic decision making, the collective efforts of the 1,200 people employed by Dale Farm, and the farmers who supply the business with high quality milk.

Nick Whelan said:

“Every decision we take as a cooperative is about ensuring the profitability and sustainability of our members’ farm businesses. Through strategic investment we are delivering growth while paying a competitive milk price to the 1,300 farmers who own the business and supply us with healthy, nutritious, quality milk.

“Through our strategy – a focus on research and development and investing in the strongest areas of our business – we are growing, and these results show that strategy is working. We have developed a high-performance culture at Dale Farm where our team members across the business are stepping up to the challenge, using their creativity and diligence to ensure we are the best that we can be.

“Our ambition is to lead the sector, not just in Northern Ireland but across Europe. Our £70m investment in our cheddar processing facility at Dunmanbridge will ensure we remain at the cutting edge of innovation and build on our reputation for quality, consistency and sustainability.

Fred Allen, Chairman, Dale Farm said, “Last year the dairy market experienced volatility, and inflation continues to affect input costs for producers. Against this backdrop, over the past year we were still in a position to pay a competitive milk price, with the average price paid totalling 35.2p per litre in 2023/24. It is more important than ever that we continue to invest in those parts of the business that deliver the highest returns for our farmers. The profitability of the cooperative and continued investment is key to securing farm businesses for future generations.”