The European Investment Bank (EIB) has agreed to provide financial support to Polish dairy cooperative Mlekpol.

The loan of €50m will be used by the Polish dairy cooperative to upgrade its facility and support growth strategy.

EIB vice-president Lilyana Pavlova said: “This is our second loan to Mlekpol and our third to dairy cooperatives in Poland.

“We are convinced that by supporting sound investment plans in agriculture and the food processing industry we can help Poland to strengthen a key sector of its economy, improve its long-term competitiveness and achieve balanced territorial development.

“This operation is also a good example of EIB support for Polish small and medium-sized companies that have credible growth plans.”

Mlekpol, operating 12 processing plants across the country, will use the funds to enhance its Grajewo facility.

Expansion and upgrade of the facility will enable Mlekpol to increase fresh milk processing capacity and also counterbalance seasonal shifts in supply.

Additionally, the loan will be used for the construction of a warehouse and logistics centre, increasing the company’s efficiency.

To eliminate the need for purchasing grid electricity, the Polish dairy company will build a combined heat and power plant. It will be built next to Mlekpol’s wastewater treatment plant in Grajewo and run on biogas.

Mlekpol president Edmund Borawski said: “Our Dairy Cooperative focuses on sustainable development. The need to protect the environment has become an important factor in stimulating the development of innovation.

“Thanks to EIB support and funds, we will introduce new, more effective solutions, for both production and the environment. We will contribute to reducing external ecological costs and being more energy-efficient.”