Arla is set to close its Hatfield Peverel fresh milk dairy following a review of its UK processing requirements.
The proposed closure of the Essex facility, which is subject to consultation with those affected, is likely to take place before the end of July 2016, with the loss or relocation of up to 200 jobs.
The majority of Hatfield’s processing will be taken by the firm’s Aylesbury site, which opened in 2014. Aylesbury now has the ability to process one billion litres of milk per year.
Smaller volumes will be taken to other fresh milk dairies depending on requirements.
Dan Kolding, senior vice president, supply chain, Arla Foods UK said the company’s position as a farmer-owned dairy meant its mission was to return the highest possible value for farmers’ milk and create opportunities for growth.
"The development of Aylesbury is helping us to deliver this vision in the UK, as the dairy approaches capacity," he said.
"We are entering into full consultation with all colleagues affected by both proposals, and their trade union representatives.
"We are committed to supporting affected colleagues at this difficult time and will do everything we can to support them in their search for suitable alternative employment, either within Arla or elsewhere."
Arla said the changes followed a £150 million investment in its Aylesbury plant. As a result of the proposed closure Arla intends to outsource logistics operations currently ran from Hatfield Peverel to supply chain distribution and services firm Bidvest Logistics.
This proposed move would impact about another 32 employees, which could be transferred to Bidvest.