23 Apr 2012

Milk NZ Holding looks forward to finalising Crafar deal

10:07 am on 23 April 2012

Milk New Zealand Holding Limited is eager to finalise its ownership of the 16 Crafar dairy farms.

On Friday the Government approved a new recommendation by the Overseas Investment Office to grant consent to the company, which is a subsidiary of the Chinese owned Shanghai Pengxin group, to buy the North Island farms.

Shanghai Pengxin's New Zealand spokesperson, Cedric Allan, expects the new ownership to benefit New Zealand's ability to access the giant dairy products market in China.

He says as well as upgrading the farms and setting up a dairy training school, the company wants a greater focus on the processing and marketing of dairy products.

He says in the next few months the company plans making a deal with a New Zealand processor, and the Chinese-owned subsidiary won't be a shareholder of more than 50% in that processor, if it's a shareholder at all.

Mr Allan says the company wants to start producing high value consumer products to sell in Chinese supermarkets.

He says there's no intention to sell the output of the Crafar farms as milk powder.