Billed as one of the largest, most modern oat processing plants in Europe, the site has already created 150 new jobs – 90 during construction and 60 to operate the plant. Navara is actively recruiting for more roles at the site.
The new plant was supported by a £15m asset finance funding package from HSBC UK and is set to complete by September 2023.
Navara Oat Milling Managing director James Skidmore said: “We are pleased with the build progress and are excited to start commissioning and to process our first oats this summer. We know there is increasing demand for oat ingredients in food products and non-dairy drinks.
Sustainable oat chain
“Through this investment Navara, with the support of our parent companies, will build and grow a dedicated and sustainable oat supply chain, bringing farmer and food manufacturer closer together, delivering improvements that benefit each sector and our environmental impact.”
Navara is jointly owned by Frontier Agriculture, a crop production and grain marketing company that will supply all oats processed at the plant via growers in the surrounding region; Camgrain, a farmer-owned cooperative; and Anglia Maltings Holdings, a food and drink ingredient manufacturer.
The plant’s location – alongside Camgrain’s advanced processing centre in a ‘key arable region between Corby and Kettering’ – promises easy access to both oat growers and manufacturers using cereal-based ingredients, minimising food miles.
Provenance and traceability
“We are now welcoming interest from manufacturers and users of oat ingredients. We will work together to realise the potential of oats, embracing all that they can deliver in terms of provenance, traceability and sustainability,” Skidmore added.
“Navara will create supply chain efficiencies and the food and drink industry will benefit from the investment we have made in delivering consistently high quality products. Collaboration with farmers supplying the new mill will see value added in all areas such as agronomy advice, seed variety choice and the development of sustainable crop production.”
Meanwhile, Pembrokeshire Creamery is to invest £17m in a new milk processing facility at the recently developed Pembrokeshire Food Park, with 80 new jobs to be created over the next three years.