September 12, 2022
American dairy cooperative Darigold Inc. held a groundbreaking event on September 8 to mark the start of work on its new $600 million production facility in Pasco, WA, according to a release issued by the Port of Pasco.
The facility will include two specialized milk dryers and two packaging lines dedicated to powdered milk products. When the facility becomes operational in 2024, it will have a processing capacity of 8 million lb/day of milk. Two butter churns, five consumer butter packaging lines, and two bulk butter packaging lines will be installed at the location.
“The Pasco project represents our third major capital investment in as many years, the largest investment in our co-op’s 104-year-history, and a significant step in an ongoing strategy to expand and modernize Darigold,” Joe Coote, chief executive officer of the co-op, said in a statement. “We are a beloved heritage brand with deep roots in Washington and around the Pacific Northwest, but there’s still considerable opportunity for us to leverage industry growth – here at home and around the world – to become a top-tier global dairy producer. This facility will play an important role in helping us achieve that vision.”
About 175 million lb/yr of butter will me manufactured at the Pasco site, as well as some 280 million lb/yr of powdered milk products like infant formula. The plant’s proximity to rail lines and global shipping ports will expand the company’s ability to serve domestic and international customers.
“The growth of the dairy sector both domestically and internationally presents an opportunity for our dairy farmers,” said Allan Huttema, chairman of Darigold’s board and operator of Almar Dairy in Parma, ID, in the release. “Dairy farmers in the Pacific Northwest have a unique opportunity to benefit from global demand for dairy, which is rising considerably faster than it is domestically. The region is ideally suited to producing high-quality, nutritious dairy and our proximity to global shipping infrastructure makes it more efficient to access international markets.”
About 200 new jobs will be created with the opening of the plant.
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