Fonterra and First Milk Form Whey Joint Venture

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Fonterra and First Milk Form Whey Joint Venture

Fonterra and First Milk Form Whey Joint Venture
September 06
08:30 2011

New Zealand-based Fonterra and UK-based First Milk have established a strategic joint venture to produce premium whey proteins for Fonterra’s growing food ingredients business. The two dairy farmer co-operatives will combine their intellectual property and industry expertise to add value to the whey streams at First Milk’s Lake District creamery in Cumbria, England.


First Milk supplies and markets 15% of the milk produced in the UK. As an integrated company, it is a major player in the liquid milk, dairy ingredients and cheese sectors.


For Fonterra the joint venture is the first step in realising its goal of local European sourcing to meet the nutrition ingredient demand of European customers. For First Milk the deal adds value to the whey stream of the cheese making process, which will enhance the returns it can pass back to its farmer members.


Kate Allum, chief executive of First Milk.

Koert Liekelema, Fonterra Europe’s managing director, says: “First Milk shares the co-operative heritage and spirit with us and we look forward to using our consumer insights and innovative mind-set to produce products which help European consumers live healthier lives. This deal underpins Fonterra’s strategic focus on premium ingredients, in particular milk and whey proteins. Furthermore, we are very pleased to secure First Milk’s whey protein, enabling Fonterra to offer custom made, premium whey protein ingredients to the major food companies inEurope.”


Kate Allum, chief executive of First Milk, comments: “While this is our first step into added value whey markets, it builds on the work we have done recently with a range of partners across the supply chain to deliver pioneering solutions. Obviously the UK market remains the bedrock of our business. However, it is also important that we explore opportunities, such as this one with Fonterra, that have the potential to deliver enhanced returns for our dairy farmers.”


The premium whey proteins from First Milk’s Lake District creamery will be applied in Fonterra’s functional and cultured nutrition ingredients like PowerProtein and ElevateProtein, based on Whey Protein 80% ingredients (WPC80).


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