• Farming

2018 ‘exceptional year’ for Drinagh Co-Op in spite of weather obstacles

Monday, 17th June, 2019 11:41am
2018 ‘exceptional year’ for Drinagh  Co-Op in spite of weather obstacles

Pictured at the launch of the Drinagh Co-Op annual report for 2018 were – from left – Seamus Daly, assistant chief executive and dairy manager; Joe O’Sullivan, chief executive; TJ Sullivan, chairman, and Gavin Murphy, financial controller. (Photo: George Maguire)

ANOTHER successful year’s trading was reported by Drinagh Co-Op at their recent AGM in Drinagh, with an increased operating profit of €0.8million, creamery volume up 6%, milk output increased by 30% and store sales up 10% on 2107. 

Founded in 1923, Drinagh Co-Op is a dairy and agribusiness co-operative based in the heart of West Cork. Drinagh Co-Op is owned by its 2,000 shareholders and employs a staff of 260 making it a significant contributor to the local economy in West Cork.

Speaking at the AGM, chairman TJ Sullivan said, ‘In 2018 our industry was negatively impacted by extreme weather conditions – heavy rain in spring and drought in summer. Overcoming these and indeed be in a position to report successes makes this an exceptional year. We are delighted to report an increase in operating profit and that our milk supply for this year increased by 6.1% on 2017 to 197.9 million litres.”

Mr Sullivan recognised the contributors to that success and acknowledged those who worked hard to ensure the society thrived in 2018: ‘We have some of the best suppliers in the country, combined with loyal customers and staff who are willing to go above and beyond to keep the feed supplied and the milk collected during the difficult conditions means we are in a position to report a good news story today.’

Drinagh Co-Op’s milk is processed at Carbery Foods Ingredients Ltd (the co-op owns a 35% share of the company). The excellent quality of the milk provided by suppliers has been recognised locally and nationally with 51 of Drinagh’s suppliers receiving the CellCheck Milking for Quality Award, which is given to the top 500 suppliers in the country. This commitment to quality meant that the board was in a position to approve a bonus of 0.5 cents per litre on 2018 milk supply.

In July 2018, An Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar, TD, paid tribute to Drinagh Co-Op for its commitment to investment in innovative technologies in response to a growing need for animal fodder when he officially opened the €3.75million feed mill extension. 

Drinagh Co-Op ended 2018 in a strong position and the Society has made investments to ensure it can look forward to continuing success in 2019 and future years.