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Report - - Dairy Farmers of Britain, Carlisle Dairy, July 2010 | Industrial Sites | 28DaysLater.co.uk
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Report - Dairy Farmers of Britain, Carlisle Dairy, July 2010

J27

28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
#1
Not a lot of history about the site itself I'm afraid, but there is a substantial amount of information about the owners of the site and their collapse.

Dairy Farmers of Britain (DFOB) was the third largest dairy farmers' co-operative before it's collapse on the 3rd of June 2009. It employed 2,400 across its estate of five liquid milk dairies, two cheese creameries, one ingredients plant and 50 distribution depots. Its 1,800 dairy farmers supplied 1 billion litres to the food and drink industry. DFOB's ill-fated acquisition of Associated Co-operative Creameries for £81m in 2004 and its subsequent failure to modernise its facilities and processes sufficiently seems to be cited as the major cause for it's downfall: It struggled to compete with its more muscular milk processing rivals, Robert Wiseman, Dairy Crest and Arla, partly because of its inefficiencies, the liquid division's costs were too high, and it could not achieve a high enough price from buyers, such as the supermarkets, to cover these costs. As a result, DFOB was not able to pay its dairy farmer members a competitive milk price, and DFOB's farmers started to resign en masse (between November 2008 and June 2009 about half (900) of DFOB's members resigned). The malaise of its liquid division is illustrated by the fact that by 20th June 2009 PricewaterhouseCoopers, the receiver, has only been able to sell four of its depots, leading it to close more than 15 sites, with the loss of 250 staff.

Demands from farmers prompted a Government inquiry into the collapse of DFOB earlier this year.

During a two-hour hearing of the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs committee Mr Moody (a former executive director of DFOB) said it inherited a loss-making factory in Wales and a crippling four-year contract to supply a competitor at a price lower than the cost of production (through DFOB's acquisition of Associated Co-operative Creameries). Mr Moody was asked if it was a conflict of interest for his company, Smith and Williamson, to project-manage the purchase of ACC (described by Committee chairman Michael Jack as an “horrific acquisitionâ€￾) for which it earned almost £1m in 2005. He denied this and said the arrangement had been transparent to the board.

Former chairman Rob Knight (who acted as chief executive and chairman of DFOB for nine months in 2005 for a £400,000 salary) went on to describe two “fundamental eventsâ€￾ from which the company could not recover.
These were the renegotiation and eventual loss of its milk supply contract to the Co-operative supermarket chain and the poor weather affecting milk production in 2007.

The committee may have a further hearing and report to the government later this year.


There was a lot to see and it was a nice relaxed explore.

The pics:

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Externals

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Thanks for looking
 

J27

28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
#2
Good report, but no room shots to give us an idea what the place is like? There's plenty of details but it has no context?

Cheers

HS
I'm sorry. I have internet problems at the moment because of wonderful providers taking over the phone line and not allowing changes to other (hopefully better) providers, so am doing this at work. I will sort some room shots out when I get home and post them tomorrow. For now all I have with me is a couple from the garage area.

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MrMustache

28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
#4
Hey, nice pictures. Do you have any information as to where you found this place? Also if it's still around?
 

Yorrick

28DL Regular User
Regular User
#5
I think this was Associated Co-operative Creameries on Holywell Crescent. It looks like it's been replaced with houses now.
 

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