Bairds Malt, the UK-based business of Australian stock listed company GrainCorp, today announced a £51 million (US$67 million) investment to expand its Scottish malting capacity, reflecting strong sector growth and customer demand.
The company will add a total of 79,000 tons of annual malting capacity by upgrading its Arbroath facility and building a new state-of-the-art malting plant at its Inverness site. This will bring Bairds Malt’s total annual capacity to over 300,000 tons. Just eight years ago, in 2010,Bairds Malt added a new state of the art 57,000 tons malting plant at Arbroath.
GrainCorp will fund the planned expansion from cash flow and existing debt facilities spread across the next three years. The project is expected to complete in 2021.
“The market for distilling malt in Scotland has been growing steadily since 2004 and it has a long-term focus due to global demand for aged whisky. The number of distilleries in Scotland has increased by 29 over the past 15 years and large distillers are expanding production capacity,” said Mark Palmquist, GrainCorp Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer. “Given these factors, we expect to underpin the majority of the new capacity ahead of construction through new or extended long-term agreements. Both our Inverness and Arbroath facilities are strategically positioned close to key customers and with good barley supply.”
Last year, Great Western Malting, the U.S. arm of GrainCorp, completed an expansion at its Pocatello/Idaho plant, which increased capacity from 100.000 metric tons to 220.000 metric tons of processed barley (approx. 176.000 mt of malt). (inside.beer, 6.7.2017)
Only last week, The Australian reported, Graincorp is set to swallow the international $1 billion malt business of U.S. agrifirm Cargill. (inside.beer, 12.10.2018)
GrainCorp’s global malt business is currently headed by Greg Friberg who decided to retire at the end of this year. He will be succeeded by Darren Smith who has held various positions within the company, most recently four years as Chief Operations Officer at GrainCorp Malt. (inside.beer, 5.10.2018)