Dec 22nd 2023 /
Yili and Westland Milk Products extend historic 10-year milk supply agreement indefinitely
Company also extends Fonterra 10c price premium guarantee
Westland Milk Products farmer suppliers will be guaranteed their milk will be picked up by the company beyond the 10-year supply agreement originally approved by the High Court of New Zealand in 2019.
The 10-year commitment was made when Yili, Asia’s largest dairy producer, purchased Westland in 2019 and Westland guaranteed to collect farmers’ milk for a period of 10 years after the date of acquisition at pricing at least equal to Fonterra’s Farm Gate Milk Price.
Westland also committed today to pay farmer suppliers a 10-cent premium above Fonterra’s Farm Gate Milk Price for the 2024-25 and 2025-26 seasons. This extends and goes beyond the payment terms made under the original Scheme of Arrangement.
Westland Resident Director Zhiqiang Li said Yili was extremely proud to return the faith farmers had placed in Yili when they voted for Yili to acquire the former co-operative in August 2019.
“We were extremely humbled by the overwhelming trust farmers placed in us when they voted to accept Yili’s offer and now we are deeply honoured to be able to repay that good faith,’’ Mr Li said. “Westland as a business continues to go from strength to strength and this is because of the trust and respect we enjoy with our farmers as partners in this great enterprise.’’
Westland CEO Richard Wyeth said the company wanted to give suppliers the confidence they need to continue to invest in their businesses by offering the strongest possible supply agreement.
“The professional way our farmers conduct their businesses has put us in a very strong position with our customers and we are now in a position to repay that,’’ Mr Wyeth said.
“We hope this arrangement will give farmers the confidence they need to continue to invest in their businesses, continue to grow with us and continue to gain a return on their investments for many years to come.
“And, of course, we’re also very excited to be able to offer this news to the community just before Christmas.
“We’re very aware of the role we play in the community and we’re very grateful for Yili’s support helping us to invest in the West Coast and Canterbury communities.’’
Richard Wyeth is available for interview.
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