Valio is building a 170 million euros plant to produce snacks in Riihimäki

Valio Ltd’s Board of Directors decided on 12th May 2014 to commence the construction of a new snacks plant in Riihimäki, near the present Valio Herajoki plant. The value of the investment in the building is around 75 million euros and the total budget for the snacks plant amounts to around 170 million euros. The Board of Directors also took the decision to invest some 2.5 million euros in increasing cottage cheese capacity at the company’s Seinäjoki plant.

“In the first phase, Valio will build a plant with a floor area of around 18 000 square metres on a plot of land purchased last year, enabling the environmentally sound, efficient and flexible production of snacks. The earthworks for the construction project will start immediately and the plant is slated for completion by the end of 2016. The plant itself will create dozens of new jobs in production and warehousing operations. The space on the new plot will facilitate the significant development of operations going forward if indicated by market forces,” says Sami Nupponen from Valio.

Valio’s present dairy in Riihimäki is 45 years old and will continue liquid milk production after the new plant has been completed.

Valio fresh dairy products are enjoyed in neighbouring markets as well as Finland

Sales of Valio products, especially milks and yoghurts manufactured in Finland, have increased markedly in Russia and Sweden in recent years. The demand for value added products, such as Eila® items, yoghurts and high protein products is expected to continue its growth.

In Sweden, Valio’s largest product groups are yoghurts and Valio Eila®. In Russia, growth stems primarily from fresh dairy products, while Oltermanni® cheese and Valio butter also sell in large volumes and contribute significantly. In both Russia and Sweden, net sales expressed in euros increased by more than 10% in 2013.

In Sweden, Valio’s Eila® brand has captured over 55% of the lactose free products market.

“The new plant will enable us to expand our snack products range in Sweden further. We need to be nimble and responsive, especially in the rapidly growing lactose free yoghurt segment,” says Iiro Wester, Managing Director of Valio’s Swedish subsidiary.

In Russia, fresh dairy products have been the fastest growing category of our exports to the country in recent years.

“Valio’s share has been growing steadily for years. In spoonable yoghurts, we are now the market leader in St. Petersburg where the value of Valio’s sales in the segment exceeded that of Danone in late 2013. There’s especially significant potential in the Moscow market where Valio is a challenger across the board. All Valio yoghurts sold in Russia are completely additive free and can be identified by our Clean Label brand,” says Mika Koskinen, Managing Director of Valio’s Russian subsidiary and a member of the Valio Group Executive Board.

More capacity for special milks

Valio has expanded production capacity for special milks in recent years at the Jyväskylä and Tampere dairies. In February 2014, Valio decided to invest 40 million euros in growing the production capacity of all fresh dairy product groups at the Oulu dairy.

Further information: Sami Nupponen, Project Director, tel. +358 10 381 2505.