Laois jobs still in pipeline as firms commit to new plants

Conor Ganly

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Conor Ganly

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news@leinsterexpress.ie

Laois jobs still in pipeline as firms commit to new plants

Work on the Glanbia Portlaoise cheese plant came to a standstill during lockdown. Picture: Marcin Malek

Two critically important projects that promise long term jobs in Laois are still on track despite the Covid-19 pandemic.

Glanbia and Canadian company Greenfield Global have both confirmed that their projects remain on track.

Ken Finnegan is the Managing Director of Greenfield Global Ireland. The Canadian bio-ethanol producer is building a plant in Portlaoise at the IDA Business Park.

“Construction is nearing completion despite the challenges of Covid-19,” Mr Finnegan told the Leinster Express.

“We expect to be mechanically complete by end of June when we will then begin our commissioning and validation program,” he said.

Mr Finegan said once operational products made in Portlaoise they would be used in the fight against Covid-19.

“Our products (ethanol, IPA and buffer solutions) which we will be blending in Portlaoise will be used by companies in Ireland and the EU in the fight against Covid so we are determined to make these products available as soon as possible. We have continued to recruit and onboard staff remotely over the last few months,” said Mr Finnegan in a statment.

Meanwhile, the food giant Glanbia, told the Leinster Express recently that they remained committed to opening a cheese plant in Laois.

The company said in April that capital expenditure had been reduced to key strategic projects and essential maintenance only due to the Covid-19 outbreak.

However, the company said its project in Portlaoise “remains a key strategic project”.

The construction of the new joint venture project in Portlaoise with Leprino Foods and Enterprise Ireland was paused due to Covid-19 restrictions.

An estimated €130 million was earmarked for the plant wich would create 250 construction jobs and 80 positions when open.