Chairman reports on busy year at Tatura Milk

‘‘Time for reflection is rare in life and in business,’’ Tatura Milk Industries chairman Barry Irvin told suppliers when delivering his end-of-financial-year report.

July 24, 2014 3:55am

‘As we came to the close of the 2013-14 financial year, I did take a small amount of time to look back on what has been an extraordinarily busy and positive year for the company and our suppliers,’’ he said.

Mr Irvin said of great interest to almost everyone within the industry and the Australian financial press for much of the year was the Bega Cheese offer to acquire Warrnambool Cheese and Butter.

He said this was an important moment in the Australian dairy industry and many words had been written about the process and the final outcomes. He congratulated all those involved.

‘‘Many people would have observed the significant effort and time dedicated to the bidding process,’’ Mr Irvin said.

‘‘As I reflect on the bid and the 2013-14 year, one of the things I am most proud of is the discipline our team displayed throughout the bidding process and the fact that operationally the company continued to remain focused and execute the key elements of our strategic plan.

‘‘In the 2013-14 year Bega Cheese built and commissioned a new infant formula blending and canning plant at Derrimut in Melbourne, expanded cheddar cheese production at Coburg, expanded lactoferrin production at Tatura, installed and commissioned whey processing capacity at Tatura and significantly progressed planning for the construction of new high value whey processing at our Lagoon St facility in Bega.

‘‘All of the above projects are both a testament to capability of the teams at Bega Cheese and a demonstration of our continued focus on adding value to milk, growing our business and responding to customer requirements.’’

Mr Irvin said in a year of much corporate and operational activity, it was pleasing to see suppliers receive healthy pay-rates for their milk, reflecting strong global dairy prices and consistent business performance and strategy.

‘‘The importance of suppliers to our business has again been emphasised this year with the company introducing a new initiative which is separate to annual pay-rates and looks to support farmers in business improvement and development initiatives in the area of sustainability and growth,’’ he said.

‘‘In short the 2013-14 year has been one that reflects our focus on business performance and strategy with excellent outcomes from the perspective of corporate activity, business investment and milk supply pay-rates and initiatives.

‘‘There are always challenges in dairy and often when prices are good the season is difficult. As I reflect on the year it is pleasing to also reflect on relatively good seasons in all our milk supply regions.

‘‘The 2014-15 financial year will no doubt bring challenges and opportunities in equal measure. As I reflect on the past financial year I know the year ahead will require the same amount of energy, passion and commitment to ensure success,’’ Mr Irvin said.

‘‘As with every year I look forward to working with suppliers, staff and customers to ensure we successfully deliver high quality dairy products to customers wherever they may be in the world.’’

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