19 Dec 2012

Co-operative group chairman happy with Fonterra 'hybrid'

7:03 am on 19 December 2012

The chairman of the organisation representing co-operatives in New Zealand says he's comfortable with the changes in Fonterra's capital structure that have modified its co-operative status.

Blue Read, a North Taranaki dairy farmer who has been elected to Fonterra's board, also chairs Co-operative Business New Zealand.

He says Trading Among Farmers (TAF) with the Shareholders Fund that allows outsiders to invest in the company's profits means Fonterra has become a hybridised co-op model.

But he says he's happy with that and predicts TAF will be an outstanding success for the company.

Mr Read says organisations can't stay stuck in the past and will die if they do.

"The co-operative model has got some principles that guide them but it doesn't necessarily bind them and I think that's really important for people to keep in mind," he says.