U.K. Dairy Crest selling fluid operations

One of Britain’s big dairy companies is getting out of the fluid milk business.  Dairy Crest is selling its bottling business to Muller UK & Ireland Group part of  Germany’s Muller Wiseman for 80 million Pounds. ($127 million U.S.).  The deal includes four bottling plants.

Dairy Crest sold 1.3 billion liters, about 15 percent of the U.K.’s milk for 944.8 million Pounds Sterling ($1.5 billion U.S.) in the year ending March 31, 2014.  However profits on milk sales have plunged 95 percent in the last six months.

Some analysts say the sale will make Muller Wiseman a better competitor for Denmark’s Arla.  That should mean better prices for British dairy producers who are currently getting some of the lowest milk prices in Europe.

If the sale is approved by shareholders, Dairy Crest will focus on the remaining 30 percent of their business which is cheese and butter.

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