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Chinese-invested New Zealand milk plant on track for 2018 operation

Xinhua | Updated: 2017-08-05 11:17

WELLINGTON - Mataura Valley Milk, one of New Zealand's major milk processing plant with a 72 percent stake held by State-owned China Animal Husbandry, is gearing up for production to begin in August 2018.

Mataura Valley Milk said in a statement on Friday that China Animal Husbandry is going to fund construction of Mataura Valley Milk's NZ$240 million($179 million) milk powder manufacturing plant in Gore of New Zealand's Southland, which is going to hire 65 fulltime employees.

Mataura Valley Milk is striving to be the "World's Best Nutritional Business," manufacturing and producing premium infant milk formula mainly for export from its purpose-built nutrition plant at McNab near Gore, Southland, the statement said.

About 30,000 tons of infant formula will be manufactured by Mataura Valley Milk each year at full capacity, and about 500,000 litres of whole milk will be processed a day, it said.

Southland farmers are expressing significant interest in becoming Mataura Valley Milk shareholders and the company expects to fill its supplier requirements, said general manager Bernard May.

Continued recruitment of milk supplier or shareholders, and staff, were major focuses in the next six months, May said, adding that the company had received significant interest from farmers in becoming shareholders and was confident of having the 25 to 30 needed by December.

"The farmer shareholders already on board are embracing the opportunity of superior returns by supplying milk into a fully integrated nutritional business," he said.

The plant would be unique as it would meet and exceed several international nutritional validation standards and contain features which set it apart from a traditional dairy plant, May said.

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