14 Feb 2012

Financial loss won't hit payments - dairy processor

9:02 am on 14 February 2012

New Zealand's largest independent dairy processor, Open Country, says a financial loss to the company won't impact on the price it pays its farmers for milk.

In its annual report, the company's posted a $29.5 million loss for the year to July 2011, three times larger than the previous season.

Open Country's chairman Laurie Margrain says the high price of raw milk and a strong kiwi dollar contributed to the drop.

But he says, despite that, the company last season paid a record $7.56 per kilogram of milk solids to its 500 farmer suppliers last season. Fonterra suppliers received $7.60 a kg, plus a 65 cents a share dividend.

Mr Margrain says the company will continue to give its farmer suppliers competitive returns and he says the new season is very positive.