Tuesday, 08 March 2016 14:55

New plants, more jobs

Written by 
Fonterra managing director global operations Robert Spurway. Fonterra managing director global operations Robert Spurway.

Sixty new dairy process jobs were created when Fonterra opened four plants in the South Island recently.

First came the Mozzarella plant at the Clandeboye site, followed next day by Deputy Prime Minister Bill English opening three plants at the Edendale site in Southland. The three were an anhydrous milk fat plant, a reverse osmosis plant to make the dryers more efficient and a milk protein concentrate plant.

Some 200 people attended -- Fonterra farmers, staff, iwi and central and local government representatives.

Fonterra managing director global operations Robert Spurway said "Investing in dairy processing in towns like Clandeboye and Edendale supports the local dairy workforce, brings opportunities for tradesmen, consultants and contractors and has a flow-on effect for local businesses."

Leading up to the 60 process jobs, the projects have also provided work for thousands of people during construction.

Spurway said "While our preference is to fill roles locally, these expansions are also a drawcard for people looking to move in from outside the region, bringing investment in housing and infrastructure."

These new plants help Fonterra to shift milk into more products that deliver higher returns.

After attending both events, Fonterra director Leonie Guiney said "the site expansions had already contributed to Fonterra's improved performance in the first quarter of the current financial year".

"Our new plants enabled our co-op to avoid incurring additional costs at the peak of the current season. We are achieving higher yields and quality, and the flexibility to vary our product mix is enabling us to earn margins above the prevailing market prices."

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