Home' Northern Outlook : December 8th 2012 Contents 3
CENTRAL SOUTH ISLAND FARMER
Not looking like drought -- so far
Canterbury farmers do not
need to make contingency
plans for drought.
Neutral summer looms
East coast North Island farmers
may be bracing for higher risk of
drought over summer, but their
Canterbury counterparts should
expect a fairly typical weather
scenario for the next three
months, Federated Farmers mid
Canterbury president Chris Allen
The National Institute of Water
and Atmospheric Research
(NIWA) has forecast summer
rainfall likely to be near normal or
below normal and temperatures
likely to be near average or below
average in its seasonal climate
outlook for summer.
Summer soil moisture levels
and river flows are equally likely
to be in the normal or below nor-
mal range .
The NIWA outlook forecasts
continuing neutral conditions
(neither El Nino nor La Nina) as
the most likely outcome over the
next three months (December-
Mr Allen said a neutral forecast
made it difficult for farmers to
know how to prepare.
However he said Canterbury
farmers would not need to make
contingency plans for drought.
It s not like we re in a moisture
deficit situation down here.
The atypical spring weather
with fewer Nor-westers meant
there had been fewer days of sun-
shine and less heat, which had
slowed growth, Mr Allen said.
The season is behind by about
three to four weeks.
Lambs and cows are growing
more slowly so there could be
some pressure on the freezing
Federated Farmers adverse
events spokesperson Katie Milne
said that though there was no
indication of severe drought,
predictions of below-normal rain-
fall in the east coast of the North
Island and the top of the South
Island were a strong reminder of
how vulnerable the economy was
It is times like these we see the
real value in building more and
better water storage schemes,
particularly in areas prone to
drought. Good water storage
would help buffer farmers from
the vagaries of the weather.
Synlait pays $6.22/kg, earns $6.3m
EXCITING PROSPECTS: Synlait chief executive Dr John Penno.
Photo: DEAN KOZANIC
CENTRAL CANTERBURY milk
nutrition company Synlait Milk s
$6.3 million profit has been driven
by growth in the company s milk
powder ingredients business, its
chief executive says.
The company posted a $6.3m
profit after tax for the year ending
July 31 this year with a turnover
of $377m in its fourth year of
operation -- an increase of $78m
on the previous year.
Dr John Penno said the devel-
opment of the company s new
adult and infant nutritionals busi-
ness held exciting prospects for
the future, but it was the value-
added and consumer-ready milk
powders business that delivered
the strong financial result.
We were very pleased to
achieve a solid profit while provid-
ing a very competitive milk price
to our milk supply partners.
It is even more pleasing that
this came about in a year when
our volume of ingredient powders
has grown by 50 per cent, and we
were commissioning our new
infant formula-capable drier, Dr
The company paid its milk sup-
pliers -- all located within an
80km radius of the Synlait plant
near Dunsandel -- a total average
milk price of $6.22/kg MS.
The company s milk volume
grew from 343 million litres in
2011 to 498 million litres in 2012,
with 40 new farms being contrac-
ted for supply.
The additional milk processed
lifted manufactured volumes from
54,414 metric tonnes last year to
81,398 metric tonnes this year.
Synlait Milk expanded its oper-
ation to include a purpose-built
infant formula plant.
The company also upgraded its
existing spray drier to allow for
the production of growing-up milk
powders, and its special milks
drier was upgraded to produce
high-value milk protein concen-
The company is now positioned
at the premium end of the highest
value milk protein markets. Our
partnerships with our customers,
milk suppliers, and staff continue
to mature, and our focus on con-
tinuous improvement and quality
is yielding tangible performance
improvements. This has created
the solid business platform that
we need to build our value-added
business from, Dr Penno said.
Dr Penno said while Synlait
Milk was firmly focused on fur-
ther improving its performance, it
was also considering future requi-
rements, primarily being driven
by market demand.
This includes planned invest-
ment in consumer packaging
facilities and, in time, increased
scale through additional process-
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