Dry cure bacon premium styled

Source: Danish Crown

The 30,500 sq m processing facility will use automated production equipment and processing technology to slice and pack bacon and gammon 

Danish Crown has announced a £100m investment in an environmentally friendly processing plant, to produce traceable pork products.

The 30,500 sq m facility in Rochdale will use automated production and processing technology to slice and pack bacon and gammon produced to UK welfare and food safety standards.

It is due to begin production in the second half of 2023, producing more than 900 tonnes of product per week and creating around 300 specialised jobs once fully operational.

It will be the first new Danish Crown production facility in the UK since the sale of its Tulip subsidiary to Pilgrim’s in 2019.

The site will be 100% powered by renewable energy as part of the Danish co-op’s ambition to deliver climate neutral meat production by 2050 – and customers will be provided with the carbon footprint of the products they buy.

Heat recovery from the plant’s utility systems will supplement conventional heating sources to heat the office space and provide hot water, and ammonia will be used as a refrigerant to further minimise environmental impact.

Bacon offcuts will be used in other products, such as sausages, to reduce food waste, and there will be a circular packaging system for deliveries of pork to the site to minimise packaging waste.

Danish Crown had “a long heritage in the UK, bringing British consumers high-quality bacon and pork products for over 135 years”, said CEO Jais Valeur. “This investment forms the next step in our commitment to the UK market, bringing our customers a reliable, transparent supply of high-quality bacon to help meet demand, produced to high sustainability and welfare standards.”

A commitment to sustainability was “an ambition shared by many of our customers in the UK”, he added. “With this new factory, we look forward to working more closely with them towards a more sustainable future for food production.”