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Dairy delight: Clandeboye estate invests £2m in new factory to produce more luxury yoghurt

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Expansion: From left: John Hood, director of Food and Tourism with Invest NI; Bryan Boggs, general manager of Clandeboye Estate Yogurt; Lady Dufferin; Clandeboye Estate manager Mark Logan; and Mark Bleakney, Southern Regional manager of Invest NI

Expansion: From left: John Hood, director of Food and Tourism with Invest NI; Bryan Boggs, general manager of Clandeboye Estate Yogurt; Lady Dufferin; Clandeboye Estate manager Mark Logan; and Mark Bleakney, Southern Regional manager of Invest NI

Diane Dodds

Diane Dodds

Expansion: From left: John Hood, director of Food and Tourism with Invest NI; Bryan Boggs, general manager of Clandeboye Estate Yogurt; Lady Dufferin; Clandeboye Estate manager Mark Logan; and Mark Bleakney, Southern Regional manager of Invest NI

Luxury yoghurt business Clandeboye Estate hopes to make 80 tonnes of the dairy product a week as it invests over £2m in a new factory in Co Down.

The Bangor company is creating 13 new jobs as it builds new premises on the grounds of Clandeboye Estate - the ancestral home of Lady Dufferin.

She launched the Clandeboye brand of yoghurt, from the milk of the estate's pedigree herds of Holstein and Jersey cows, in 2007.

Bryan Boggs, general manager of Clandeboye Estate Yoghurt, said: "Our mission is to grow Clandeboye Yoghurt as sustainably as possible and to maintain the high quality of our natural yoghurt offering.

"Everything from grazing to production takes place within the Clandeboye Estate, with milk sourced from the herd and local producers - a complete 'farm to spoon' journey."

The latest expansion is backed by economic development agency Invest NI.

He said its backing would enable it to invest in new machinery at the factory - giving it the capacity to produce up to 80 tonnes of yoghurt per week, over four times what it normally produces.

John Hood, director of food and drink at Invest NI, said the brand had developed into a premium offering stocked in retailers like Aldi, Sainsbury's, Tesco and Asda.

Invest NI has offered the company £470,000 support towards the new factory and machinery. This project is part-financed by the European Regional Development Fund under the Investment for Growth and Jobs Programme 2014-2020.

Separately, Economy Minister Diane Dodds has announced 20 high quality training places on the Alchemy Technology Services Assured Skills Academy in the north west. The training places are open to people with a Bachelor's or Master's degree or a Level 5 qualification in IT-related disciplines.

For more information visit www.nidirect.gov.uk/assured-skills

Belfast Telegraph