Beleaguered mozzarella cheese maker Dansco is "on the turn" after securing a new contract with a global restaurant chain based in Belgium, according to the firm's Egyptian owner Tamer Soliman.

The company, which manufactures 13,000 tonnes of mozzarella cheese a year and produces six million litres of cream, lost £750,000 in the financial year to June. And it now faces the challenge of convincing its farmer suppliers that the plant has a viable future.

A number are known to be considering their options after experiencing frequent delays in payment for their milk.

One possibility is for farmers to buy Dansco out, sources told The Grocer.

Dansco has confirmed that it has already lost 10 million litres of milk from resigning suppliers, and faces the loss of another 20 million of its 130 million-litre annual requirement at the end of this month. It dismissed rumours that up to 50 farmers have handed in their notice.