The new building provides an automated link between the firm’s milk bottling site and the adjacent factory that makes plastic bottles. This has reduced vehicle movements across the site, which bottles up to 250Ml of milk a year.
Bottles are now moved between the two buildings on conveyor belts, rather than by wagons. Levels of forklift truck emissions and diesel consumption have also been cut.
The latest developments at Foston form part of Dairy Crest’s corporate responsibility plan, launched last year.
"We saw these two tasks being carried out next to each other as a great way to cut manpower and carbon emissions," said Dairy Crest spokeswoman Olivia Seccombe.
"Packaging has been taking place there for a while, so it seemed like the next logical step to link the site operations together."
The firm predicted the building would save it money by reducing transport, packaging waste and carbon emissions, plus improving site safety. It also raised the site’s production capacity. “We have three production lines going now, with the third one going through the bridge, so we always have opportunities to grow,” said Seccombe.