ofi officially opens state-of-the-art dairy processing plant in New Zealand

ofi (olam food ingredients) is celebrating the official opening of the first phase of its new, state-of-the-art dairy processing plant located in the dairy heartland of New Zealand – the Waikato region in the north island of the country.

The facility will produce dairy ingredients like whole milk powder to meet growing demand, targeting key customers in the dessert, bakery, beverage, and confectionery categories.

Sandeep Jain, managing director and CEO, dairy, at ofi noted how continued expansion of dairy manufacturing capabilities and innovation infrastructure at the new Tokoroa plant will become part of a global network that spans major milk consumption markets, such as South-East Asia, China, the Middle East, and Africa.

The new plant also complements a suite of enhancements made to ofi’s dairy production facility and Ingredient Excellence Centre (IEC) in Johor, Malaysia back in September – which combined with a Customer Solutions Center based in Singapore, enabling it to co-create bespoke food and beverage solutions.

“Our dairy business is well positioned to serve increased demand from our global customer base and co-create innovative applications at scale – driving additional focus on the value-added capabilities within our portfolio,” Jain said.

The Tokoroa dairy ingredients forms part of ofi’s much wider natural ingredients portfolio which includes cocoa, coffee, nuts and spices, ideal combinations with dairy for customised products such as yogurts, protein bars and ready-to-drink tea, coffee and cocoa beverages. The new facility also complements ofi’s existing global footprint, driving stronger partnerships with its customers and strengthening its co-creation capabilities across the region.

The next stage of investment will see further capability added to the facility to develop high value dairy ingredients. It will also enable ofi to look at ways to grow the value of its milk, generating better returns for its farmer partners.

Naval Sabri, senior vice president, dairy, at ofi said: “The enthusiastic response we’ve received from local farmers shows that our partnership approach, and ofi’s global reputation as a leading dairy ingredients provider and innovator, has struck a chord with them.”

“The dairy ingredients we’re now producing are nutritious and highly versatile with a desirable texture and flavour. They can be used in many applications from ice cream and yogurts, bakery goods and confectionery items, through to coffee, tea and cocoa beverages,” he said.

ofi’s new facility will also help address its customers’ innovation, traceability, and sustainable sourcing requirements, engaging those keen to secure ingredients from New Zealand’s high quality milk pool.

With sustainability a core focus for ofi, it published its first sustainability strategy for its dairy business, Dairy Tracks, which outlines the detailed approach the company is taking with sustainability efforts.

The report shares how the company will meet industry challenges head on, providing direct support to its farmer partners to help them meet their goals to become more socially and environmentally sustainable by 2030.

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