“The investment will enable AFI to explore a wider range of products and new technologies,” said md Steven Howarth.
“Exact plans are confidential, but will see AFI venturing into new areas.”
AFI, which is owned by the Irish Dairy Board, said the 5,574m2 plant would replace and update its previous facility, which was built in the early 1980s.
Howarth said it would offer flexible process capabilities and dry blending production and packing facilities and would handle 50g to 1,000kg packs.
The factory will also include a new applications centre for work on new products and value-engineering solutions primarily for food manufacturers.
The factory had been commissioned to bring AFI up to the standard of other Irish Dairy Board manufacturing facilities in the UK and Europe and to respond to global demand, said Howarth.
He said the move would lead to the creation of 10 new jobs in the short term.
Clegg Food Projects has been commissioned to help design and build the facility. Work has already begun and is scheduled for completion next May.
“Having obtained funding from the Irish Dairy Board to invest in a new facility, we looked for a contractor with food specialisation and someone we could work with to successfully deliver the project to all key criteria,” said Howarth. “Our team had no hesitation in appointing Clegg Food Projects.”
AFI produces a range of dairy ingredients such as cheese flavours, whey protein and lactose, and technical ingredients, such as texturisers, emulsifiers and stabilisers, for various food and drink categories.
Recent launches have included B-Can Oat beta glucan and Cowcium Natural Milk Calcium.