The first cartons of UHT milk will this week roll out of the Miraka dairy factory near Taupo, headed for China.
Miraka has built a $27 million extension to its plant to make the 250ml branded consumer packs for Shanghai Pengxin, owner of the former Crafar farms. Now under a special deal, some of the milk from the farms is being processed into UHT by Miraka.
The Chairman of Miraka, Kingi Smiler, told Dairy News the plant has been tested for several weeks prior to this week's production start-up. Full production will be reached at the start of the new dairy season.
"The whole deal is a positive development with Shanghai Pengxin positioning themselves in the premium segment of the UHT market", he says.
The new plant will pack 60 million litres into 250ml UHT packs - 240 million packs per year. The factory is currently processing 240 million litres though the powder plant and the UHT project will take it to 300 million litres per year. The plant extension has resulted in 38 new jobs.
The UHT facility is designed to allow rapid addition of new processing lines. Two are now running and there is space for two more.
Smiler says they are talking to potential new customers including the Vietnamese who have a shareholding in Miraka.
- Dairy News 28 January 2014
Posted: Tue 18 Feb 2014