The sale, which will complete on December 26 2015, will provide greater stability for the milk industry, Truss claimed.
“It will also allow Dairy Crest to focus on growth in its cheese and spreads business in the UK, and innovative new products for export to high-growth markets,” she said.
“Dairy farmers are a vital part of our £100bn food and farming industry and today’s decision is welcome news. This deal will encourage further investment in the sector which will in turn enable the UK to compete more effectively internationally.”
Müller has withdrawn its right not to complete the purchase should there be a deterioration of more than £20M from the agreed level of profitability of Dairy Crest's Dairies operations.
Dairy Crest has agreed to make a one-off payment of £15M to Müller on completion to help meet the additional cost of the modified undertakings.
Dairy Crest ceo Mark Allen said the deal was a “transformational moment” for the dairy industry.
‘More sustainable sector’
“The deal will help to create a more sustainable UK dairy sector. It will deliver economies of scale and cost efficiencies that will underpin investment in the sector and help the UK to compete more successfully in global markets,” he said.
“Dairy Crest will now be able to focus on growth, through both our branded cheese and spreads operations and new revenue streams from manufacturing products for the fast-growing global infant formula market.
“We will work with Müller to ensure completion is achieved as smoothly as possible.”