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Buckie raises a glass to £12 million maltings investment

By Alan Beresford

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A MULTI-million investment boost for Buckie maltings has been announced.

Looking ahead to a bright future...new investment in Buckie maltings will see its capacity double. Picture: Boormalt
Looking ahead to a bright future...new investment in Buckie maltings will see its capacity double. Picture: Boormalt

International malting company Boortmalt, which owns the maltings plant on March Road, has announced a £12 million cash injection to support the growing demand for malt in whisky distilling and brewing.

Boortmalt’s expansion of its site will see production capacity increased by 50 per cent to approximately 90,000Mt per year. The expansion is already under way and scheduled for commissioning by the end of 2021.

It is expected to create an additional three jobs taking the workforce employed at the plant to 27.

Yvan Schaepman, CEO Boortmalt Group, said: “This significant investment into our malting facilities in Buckie is a signal of our confidence in the future of the market and recent performance of our customer base.

"The new capacity will allow us to increase production and do so in a more sustainable manner.”

The investment will also positively impact Boortmalt’s sustainability credentials with increased capacity reducing the distance malt and barley will be transported, helping to reduce the company’s carbon footprint. A new, modern kiln brings its own benefits to energy efficiency with more economical burner technology being installed.

Charles Tozer, General Manager UK and Ireland at Boortmalt, said: “We pride ourselves on working alongside each distiller and brewer to offer them the malt they need for style of beer or whisky.

"We are excited for what the future holds after significantly expanding our production capacity.”

News of the investment was also welcomed by local councillors Sonya Warren, Gordon Cowie and Tim Eagle.

"This is a huge investment in Buckie by Boortmalt," Councillor Warren said.

"It's fantastic to see such a level of commitment to the town and surrounding area, especially in these difficult economic times.

"This brings with it the prospect of increased trade at Buckie Harbour and further employment opportunities."

Councillor Cowie said: "I'm very pleased to hear about the expansion to Buckie Maltings as it will bring in more employment to this area and it's great to see the business thriving in this strange times.

"Hopefully there will also be a spin off in cargo movements at the harbour.

Councillor Eagle commented: "It's fantastic news to see such a large expansion at the matings, this shows just how ideal Buckie is placed for operations like the matings with quick an easy access to the A98, A96 and huge potential at the harbour.

“I welcome this great news and wish Boortmalt every success in the build, it is great to see local farmers grain, processed and sold in Moray before being made into its finished product in distilleries across the area."

Boortmalt operates in the UK as Pauls Malt, based in Bury St Edmunds, East Anglia and is one of the oldest malting family businesses in the UK dating back to the 19th century. It has run its malting facility in Buckie since 1974 , where it sources barley and sells its product locally, with the majority of its malt being delivered into Speyside.

The firm recently announced a new long-term supply agreement to buy malting barley direct from the Banff and Moray Grain Group (BMGG). Under the agreement, Boortmalt will contract directly with the group to assure supply to its maltings in Buckie.

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