Tirlán (formerly Glanbia Ireland and Glanbia Co-op), Ireland’s largest farmer-owned food and nutrition business, paid €239 million to farm families in Wexford for the milk they supplied last year…
Payments of €1.9 billion were made to over 5,000 family farm milk suppliers across the country, demonstrating the huge importance of the farmer-owned co-operative as a major economic driver of the rural economy.
The data was released as the co-operative announced its first Annual Report and Accounts as Tirlán, showing a revenue rise of 36% to €3 billion, primarily driven by strong ingredient sales internationally.
Speaking about the 2022 report and results, Wexford-born Tirlán Chairman John Murphy told Wexford Weekly that 2022 was a milestone year for the co-operative business, its farmer Members and over 2,300 employees as it transitioned to a 100% farmer-owned business and unveiled its new identity.
“We are very pleased that in Tirlán’s first year of operation we have delivered record milk and grain prices. 2022 was a remarkable year, as we returned strong financial results whilst navigating a steady path through unprecedented volatility and sharp inflationary increases in the cost of inputs at every stage of the supply chain.
“We are hugely ambitious for the future of our Co-op. As always, we will face challenges, but we are determined to work hard to continue to deliver for the benefit of our Members and all our stakeholders,” the Gorey-based farmer said.
Tirlán CEOJim Bergin commented:
“We are pleased to have delivered an excellent performance in our first year where we focused on building a strong independent organisation, with best-in-class governance structures and strong financial disciplines. The result is a vibrant organisation with 2,300 committed employees and over 5,000 dedicated farm families at its core.
“I want to thank them for their contributions and know that by working together we can achieve even more in the years ahead.
“While 2023 is proving challenging to date with a significant reduction in dairy market returns, combined with high farm input costs and supply chain inflation, we believe our Co-op is well-positioned to navigate these challenges and support our farmer Members.
“We are on track with the construction of our €200 million continental cheese facility in south Kilkenny with our partners Royal A-Ware. This exciting project provides Tirlán with new technologies and immediate access to new scale markets for 50,000 tonnes of continental cheese.
“As a significant economic driver and employer in the south-east region, Tirlán is currently recruiting for over 130 positions, in addition to up to 40 graduate positions.”
The co-operative reported record farmgate prices of 63cpl (incl VAT) paid for milk, with green feed barley reaching €310 tonne. However, prices were mirrored by a sharp rise in farm input costs, with significant increases in energy, fertiliser and feed.
As the largest buyer and user of Irish grains, Tirlán paid farmer Members over €100 million with an excellent harvest boosting intake to 290,000 tonnes. A focus on a specialised premium grains portfolio delivered over €3 million in premium payments to growers.
In 2022, Tirlán Co-op Members benefitted from a spin-out of 12 million shares in Glanbia plc which returned €168 million in value to Members. In addition, over €6.5 million was paid in Share Interest (dividends).
Tirlán recently marked a year since the transaction was completed to acquire the remaining 40% of Glanbia Ireland from Glanbia plc to create a 100% farmer-owned operating co-operative. It was the largest acquisition by an indigenous Irish company in 2022. In August 2022, the Co-op launched its new identity Tirlán which signifies a ‘land of abundance’.
The business operates across three categories – Agribusiness, Consumer and Ingredients – and now sells into more than 100 markets worldwide.
Tirlán launched a new five-year strategy ‘Nourishing Ambition’ with a focus on adding value to its milk and grain pool. The organisation is continuing to enhance its innovation capabilities through its new €15 million Innovation Centre and is assessing strategic opportunities for its €150 million Investment Fund.
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