There are currently five Danone factories in France producing a variety of dairy products including yoghurts, desserts, and fromage blanc for the domestic and international markets.
To improve the global competitiveness of these sites, Danone spokesperson Gabriella Colletti said the company is investing €10m to reorganise production and invest in new equipment and training.
Each factory will be given a more specific and clearer role under the new plans. At the moment there is some level of specialisation but factories often produce products across dairy categories for different markets.
Reorganisation will now bring greater specialisation so at Seine-Maritime in the north of France, for example, fruit yoghurts will be manufactured only for the international market, while in Villecomtal, Danone will produce fruit yoghurts for the domestic market.
Colletti said that by focusing each factory on a specific market in this way Danone will improve efficiency in production and reduce logistical costs.
In addition to reorganisation, Danone is also ramping up production capacity in certain areas. In response to higher market demand, capacity will be increased by around a third at its Molay-Littry site, which produces more sophisticated and specialist dairy products like organic yoghurts and cream desserts.
Colletti said Danone increased volumes and its overall market share in France last year and so its reorganisation plans can partly be understood as an attempt to ensure that the company can efficiently meet market demands.
No job losses are expected as part of the reorganisation but Danone expects that 150 out of 1500 workers in France will undertake new roles. Danone is beginning the local consultation process and expects the plans to be implemented over the next 18 months.