Gary McDonald Business Editor
02 August, 2022 03:00
FOODSERVICE provider Sysco Ireland has revealed plans to to double the size of its Northern Ireland operation within five years as part of an ambitious growth strategy.
And as part of its strategy, it will invest £23 million to develop a massive distribution facility on a 20-acre site at Nutt’s Corner near Antrim, which if approved will create 90 jobs and grow Sysco’s workforce in the north to 230.
Plans for the site – which is next to Lidl’s Northern Ireland distribution hub – were first revealed in the Irish News last month.
Draperstown-based construction firm Heron Brothers will be responsible advancing plans for the facility, which includes around 250,000 sq ft of floor space and 50 loading bays.
Part of north America’s leading foodservice distributor Sysco Corporation, which has global sales of more than $50 billion, the Irish operation sees the Nutt’s Corner facility as central to guaranteeing next-day delivery for the 10,000-plus food products it distributes across the island 9,000 customers in hospitality and retail.
“This project forms part of our wider growth strategy, which with continued investment in our offering, innovation and people, has helped to establish the business as the leading foodservice provider on the island of Ireland,” according to Sysco Ireland chief executive Mark Lee.
“The investment in the new facility, which is subject to planning approval, has been driven by strong customer demand in Northern Ireland, and we’re excited by the opportunities it will deliver for our ambition to grow here, supporting investment and innovation in the sector and local job creation.”
He added: “Sustainability is also a key consideration in the development plans, with the design incorporating solar panels on the roof, rainwater harvesting and advanced heat pump technology. We are committed to providing electric vehicle chargers for both staff and fleet vehicles.”
Paul Mulholland, property director at Heron Bros said: “We are delighted to bring forward these exciting proposals at Nutt’s Corner, which promises to bring great benefits to the local area.
“We pride ourselves on how we have been able to combine our traditional values with an advanced, innovative approach to construction. This project is a great example of this, combining innovative technologies designed to enhance sustainability, within a state-of-the-art storage and distribution centre.”
Prior to the submission of a planning application to Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council, a pre-application community consultation will take place, with a public exhibition on Tuesday August 9 (3pm-8pm) at the Maldon Hotel at Belfast International Airport, while a consultation website has also been launched at www.heronbrosconsultation.co.uk.