Arla has announced it will invest nearly £180 million at its Taw Valley dairy facility in Devon as part of the co-op's aim to boost exports of mozzarella. 

The significant investment will install 'highly-advanced' technology at the site to maintain its leading position in exports of the cheese.

Already one of the world’s leading mozzarella producers, Arla said it was 'even better placed' to meet increasingly specific demands from key customers.

The co-operative's mozzarella business has seen double-digit growth over the past five years.

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Arla's executive vice president, Peter Giørtz-Carlsen said: "We have strong relationships with key customers, particularly in global foodservice, and it’s from that very solid starting point we are announcing the investment today.

“But we also know that we have to work hard to maintain that position amongst the global leaders in the category and deliver on our strategy.

"This investment allows us to stay among the leaders within mozzarella, serve our customers even better and at the same time improve profitability for our farmer owners’ milk”.

The technology includes several patents and brings down the maturing process from 14 days to just one, according to Arla.

This would allow for better flexibility and innovation opportunities to meet demands from customers, who need their mozzarella to brown, melt or stretch in a certain way.

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The cheese produced at Taw Valley will add in-demand volumes to Arla Foods’ current mozzarella production.

The majority of it will be exported to global foodservice customers around the world.

Construction is expected to be finalised in 2026 with the first products from the new facility ready the following year.

Arla confirmed the investment would have no impact on its two other mozzarella production sites in Denmark.