Scotland’s leading supplier of animal feeds and animal
health products, Harbro Ltd, is poised to win a larger share
of the market in the southern half of Scotland – south
of the M8 Glasgow-Edinburgh motorway – following a bold
investment in a new feed mill in Lanarkshire and an audacious
move which has considerably strengthened the company’s
presence in the area.
The final piece of the jigsaw is now in place for Harbro to
roll out the company’s strategic plan to increase its share
of the market in the south of Scotland to the same level it has
long enjoyed in the area north of the M8.
Harbro is already the biggest supplier of animal feeds to Scottish
farmers, with annual sales of 250,000 tonnes of compound, blended
and straight feeds, and also animal health products, largely
through the company’s network of 12 retail outlets.
“Our existing customers for feed include six of the top
10 yielding dairy herds in Scotland which demonstrates the high
quality of our products and the technical back-up we provide
to our customers,” says managing director, Graham Baxter.
“We see considerable scope for increasing our market penetration
in the area south of the M8, particularly in the South-west which
is the most concentrated dairying area in Scotland. Our new mill
and dedicated team of technical sales specialists gives us an
edge which none of our competitors can match and enables us to
give our customers a service which is second-to-none.”
The new state-of-the-art mill, conveniently situated on a 10-acre
greenfield site within the new Birkhill Commercial Park just
off the main M74 Glasgow-Carlisle motorway at Lesmahagow, represents
an investment of £5 million and has been designed to human
food standards. Features include stainless steel storage bins
for raw materials to improve hygiene and accuracy of formulation
compared with the on-floor storage found in most blending plants.
Two storage and distribution warehouses cover an area of 75,000
sq ft. The mill will have a capacity of 30,000 tonnes of blended
feeds and the same tonnage of compounds. The development has
created 15 new jobs.
Feed blending will shortly transfer to Birkhill and compound
feed production is due to start in the spring. The complex is
also home to subsidiary company, Strathclyde Nutrition Ltd, which
manufactures a range of molassed licks and feed blocks for both
the wholesale and retail market.
The new mill was officially opened earlier this year by HRH
the Princess Royal who was conducted on an extensive tour of
the plant before unveiling a plaque to commemorate her visit.
Mr Baxter said farmers appreciated the investment being made
by Harbro in supporting Scottish livestock farmers at a time
when other companies were closing plants.
“We are one of very few agricultural supply companies
investing in new plant at the present time,” said Mr Baxter. “The
investment demonstrates our commitment to the industry and is
a measure of our confidence in the future of the livestock industry
Harbro has also recruited seven additional technical sales specialists,
including regional sales manager, Neil Kidd, to augment the existing
sales team in the area, and drive the company’s plans forward.
The sales force on the ground is supported by a highly qualified
team of technical specialists, including Angus Kerr, son of a
Dumfries-shire farmer, who has moved from Turriff to Birkhill
and will provide farmers with on-farm technical advice and feed
“At Harbro we firmly believe in face-to-face contact with
our customers on the farm by specialist sales staff with technical
knowledge and access to excellent technical back-up,” said
Mr Kidd. “This contrasts with the tele-sales approach being
adopted by some of our competitors and has been the cornerstone
of Harbro’s success over the years.”
Farmers were given the opportunity of viewing the new plant
last Thursday (December 7) following an open forum addressed
by milk quota broker, Ian Potter, and ANM Group Ltd chief executive,
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