Dairy Farmers of Britain commercial director David Potts has left to become MD of the newly-formed UK arm of Austrian dairy giant Nom Dairy.

Potts, who co-founded Müller UK before moving to DFB, has returned to the yoghurt industry to lead Nom's ambitious expansion plans in the UK.

Nom Dairy supplies Austrian-produced own-label yoghurt products to Tesco, but is building a £40m dairy near Telford and plans to supply other multiples as well as Tesco.

"Our plan is to supply the UK multiples with good-quality own-label short-life dairy products," said Potts. "Yoghurt consumption in the UK is still relatively low compared with the rest of Europe."

Some 35% of short-life dairy products are imported and Potts believes there is an opportunity to supply locally produced yoghurts and desserts.

"That import level is not a good situation for retailers," he said, adding that Nom UK was likely to adopt a local sourcing marketing strategy similar to Müller, which claims 90% of its milk comes from within 30 miles of its dairy.

Products would be at the premium-quality end of the own-label market rather than value, he revealed. Nom Dairy UK will initially buy its milk from Dairy Farmers of Britain, but is expected to look for its own UK farmer suppliers in future.

Potts helped establish Müller in the UK and, when Müller was restructured in 2006, he left for DFB where he helped the organisation forge closer ties with retailers and land the Tesco Localchoice contract.