The Federated Farmers conference in Ashburton on Thursday heard a call for New Zealand dairy companies to collaborate on exporting.
Westland Milk Products chief executive Rod Quin described the difficulties legitimate New Zealand companies have trading in China.
He said Westland is constantly having to fend off imitators, plagiarisers and outright crooks trying to trade on its name.
Mr Quin said it's time dairy companies began working more closely together to develop a clear New Zealand brand.
He also said that he felt since chief executive Theo Spierings had joined Fonterra from Europe, the relationship and conversations between New Zealand dairy companies had matured significantly.
Fonterra director David McLeod said he definitely feels New Zealand dairy companies need to be working together to compete on the global stage.