Dairy company Müller has unveiled its plans to acquire plastic bottle manufacturing facilities in the UK in order to create its own fresh milk packaging.

The multimillion-pound plan would provide the company with a new platform to reduce plastic usage and increase the use of recycled plastic in its bottles.

Muller aims to use 50% recycled plastic in its milk bottles by 2020.

The company currently uses 100% recyclable bottles for its branded and private label fresh milk products.

Muller has already acquired Bellshill and Manchester bottle manufacturing plants from South Africa-based plastics bottle supplier Nampak and is negotiating with the company to acquire its two production facilities in Foston and Severnside.

“Ownership of packaging assets immediately adjacent to our dairies gives us a significant advantage in our sector.”

After acquiring the Severnside-based plant, Muller intends to make significant investments to improve the manufacturing capabilities at the facility.

Muller noted that jobs are not impacted by these moves, while employees at the affected facilities will retain their jobs across the group.

Müller Milk and Ingredients managing director Andrew McInnes said: “We are clear about the need to drive down the use of plastic and have worked with our suppliers to remove 10,000t from our milk bottles since 2016. We are also actively increasing the use of recycled plastic and seeking significantly higher levels of sustainable packaging innovation.

“With these acquisitions, we are changing our operating model to gain greater control and agility to ensure that our packaging is fit-for-purpose, recyclable and evolving to meet rapidly changing customer and consumer needs.

“Ownership of packaging assets immediately adjacent to our dairies gives us a significant advantage in our sector.”

The dairy company will also use its newly acquired facilities to create new and innovative packaging solutions.

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