The Irish Dairy Board is today celebrating 40 years in the German market, where the business is on track to report record sales for 2013.

Kerrygold is Germany's number one butter brand, with a 17% market share and over a 50% branded share.

Almost 200 million packs of butter are sold in over 23,000 outlets each year - which the board claims is enough butter to stretch from Dublin to Berlin, 14 times.

The brand was first launched on a small scale in Germany in 1973.

To mark the 40th anniversary, the Irish Dairy Board has announced a €10.5m investment in new facilities to support continued growth in Germany. The investment will fund extended storage, packing, state of the art production facilities and new product development. The company employs 110 staff in Germany.

Kevin Lane, chief executive of the Irish Dairy Board, said that Germany has been the most successful export market for the company.

He said that turnover in Germany this year will surpass €280m - a record performance for the business.

Mr Lane said the expansion is good news for ''our consumers, for IDB Deutschland, for our employees and for Irish

dairy farmers, who will have a bigger market for their quality milk''.

''In the run up to 2015 and beyond, core established markets such as Germany, as well as new emerging markets, will be very important for the Irish dairy industry,'' he added.