Mole Valley Farmers reopens Devon feed mill

By Jane Byrne

- Last updated on GMT

Minnie Batters, NFU president, opens Mole Valley Farmers' upgraded feed mill in Lifton, Devon © Mole Valley Farmers
Minnie Batters, NFU president, opens Mole Valley Farmers' upgraded feed mill in Lifton, Devon © Mole Valley Farmers

Related tags Mole Valley Farmers dust handling bins feed mill process control

Mole Valley Farmers has opened its newly upgraded feed mill in Lifton, England, following a £4m investment.

The work at the Devon mill began in May last year and has taken around 12 months to complete.

The plant, on the Devon and Cornwall border, has improved raw material storage capacity, enabling feed production to increase by around 20,000 tons to a total of 135,000 tons a year.

The project involved the construction of 12 new 70-ton raw material bins and seven new 8-ton mini bulk handling bins, resulting in a total on site storage capacity of between 900 to 1,000 tons.

In addition to the £4m (US$5.03m) spend, the firm ploughed a further £250,000 into upgrading the process control system to the most modern currently available, which it maintains, delivers new levels of automation and efficiency within the manufacturing process.

The upgrade also improves the environmental impact of the site, which is cleaner, with less noise, fewer lorry movements and reduced dust.

Insecurity in global supply chains

Mole Valley Farmers, CEO, Jack Cordery, said the investment will secure the site for the coming years.

“The insecurity in global supply chains, made worse by the invasion of Ukraine, has meant getting raw materials and supply into our feed business, to make the highest quality feed we can, has at times been challenging.

“The investment will allow us to hold greater stocks of raw material. We have also focused on our environmental impact. What we are seeking to do is become the most efficient feed manufacturing business out there.

“The lower the cost of the production the better it will be for our farmers to help support a margin on their farms. Something we strive to help with every day. This demonstrates our commitment to UK agriculture.”

Mole Valley Farmers is a retail firm based in Southwest England. The cooperative has over 9,000 farmer shareholders. It recorded a turnover of £615m for the year ending September 2022. As well as its stores, it owns four ruminant feed mills, two feed blending plants and a dedicated mineral and supplements facility. 

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