AMBITIOUS plans to create a £20m dairy processing, research and training centre in Stirling have been given the backing of the Scottish Government’s rural affairs cabinet secretary Richard Lochhead.
Graham’s The Family Dairy says the proposed development would create up to 450 new jobs. It intends to lodge plans with Stirling Council in June, following public consultation.
Lochhead said: “This proposal is fantastic news for the dairy industry in Scotland.
“I particularly welcome the development of new research and development facilities.”
But the project is dependent on plans to build new homes on part of the current Graham’s site being given the go ahead.
Managing director Robert Graham said: “We will not borrow the sums required to finance this venture.
“This would place the whole business, 500 staff, 98 farming partners and all those who rely on us at risk.
“The £20m capital expenditure for our new dairy is subject to the outcome of our Airthrey Green development proposals currently sitting with Stirling Council.”
He added that the company would maintain a dairy at the current site to make butter and ice cream and that his family would keep its home there.