A NORTHERN Ireland food distribution company has ploughed £14m into a new facility in Co Antrim.
Henderson Foodservice has unveiled the new building in Mallusk in response to sales growth of nearly 40% since 2007, resulting in a need for expansion and consolidation of its two previous sites.
The new facility will provide 125,000 sq ft of warehousing, as well as a suite of new offices. The new cold store alone is 31,474 sq ft, the size of almost four and a half standard football pitches.
Damien Barrett, managing director of Henderson Foodservice, said that by consolidating distribution into one base, the firm can streamline the business, share resources and control running costs as well as creating more space for staff, future expansion and job creation.
"In addition, the new facility now houses a new showroom with a fully operational kitchen," he said.
"This will be used as a tool to allow new and existing clients the opportunity to sample the latest lines, plus offer an excellent training resource for developing sales and customer training.
"To make such a significant investment at this time shows the commitment of the company to developing the sector in the long term. We are all facing the challenge of increasing costs and it is critical we invest in the future control of those costs," added Mr Barrett.
Ballymena building firm Patton Construction carried out the work on the new facility.
There is also a new road system allowing direct access from Mallusk Road into the Foodservice site, with eight 'goods in' docking bays, allowing for efficient logistical operations.