The Board of Arrabawn Co-Op has voted to sell its liquid milk sales book to Aurivo which will impact 140 employees.
Local TD Denis Naughten said that the transition will be a huge blow to those employees as well as the local community.
It is understood that potential redundancy or re-deployment will be offered to the 140 employees.
But Deputy Naughten said that this is a ‘significant blow’ to local liquid milk suppliers who have invested significantly in their dairy farms to ensure that the Kilconnell plant was provided with milk supplies 365 days per year.
“Over recent years there has been significant investment in the plant which handles the liquid milk operations for Arrabawn Dairies who supply own brand milk to many retailers throughout the country and the loss of this competitor will also have a longer-term impact on consumer milk prices.”
Following a meeting with local councillors Tim Broderick and Evelyn Parsons yesterday on the threat to the Kilconnell plant, Deputy Naughten has asked for a meeting with Minister Charlie McConalogue.
“It is imperative not only that all possible steps are taken to bring replacement jobs to Kilconnell, but we also need to see the Tánaiste and IDA bring new investment to the underdeveloped IDA park at Creagh in Ballinasloe.
“There is something fundamentally wrong when we have companies in Athlone and Galway talking of the need for additional capacity while we have over 50 acres of State land lying idle just a short journey over the road in Ballinasloe.”