Oceania Dairy expects to reach maximum production for the 2014-15 season next month at its new Glenavy factory.
The $214 million factory construction project will draw to a conclusion this week when a six-week period of plant commissioning is completed. The overall construction programme will be completed with a handover of the dryer.
The factory will receive 170 million litres of milk from suppliers in its inaugural season and is expected to generate 30,000 tonnes of milk powder.
“Milk supply to the new factory from our 48 local suppliers will peak in October with 31.8 million litres scheduled to be processed for the month,” said Aidan Johnstone, Oceania Dairy Chief Executive.
“The factory will operate at approximately 65% of capacity in its first year producing 30,000 tonnes of milk powder.
“At full capacity, Glenavy will have an annual output of 47,000 tonnes of milk powder,” he said.
Oceania Dairy’s staff numbers at the Glenavy factory site have reached 68 as the company moves into its full production cycle for the season.
Oceania Dairy signed its first milk supply agreement for the new factory late last year with local dairy identities Aad and Wilma van Leeuwen, representing a group of foundation suppliers covering 20 individual farms.
There has subsequently been strong supplier demand from farmers in the South Canterbury – North Otago region that is Oceania’s natural catchment. Oceania has identified farms within a radius of 50km from the Glenavy factory as its “home” collection area.