Friday, July 8, 2022

Fonterra’s winter spruce-up in full swing

More than 900 Fonterra manufacturing site staff are taking part in New Zealand’s biggest annual winter maintenance spruce-up, ensuring everything is in good shape for the season ahead.

Many of Fonterra’s 27 sites around the country have closed shop and are getting scrubbed up over 10 weeks, as milk flows have dropped off, allowing maintenance to be done.

Operations director Brent Taylor said the co-operative does maintenance every year to keep the sites match-fit to process more than 17 billion litres of milk annually.

“Typically, we produce around 2.4 million metric tonnes of product a season running our driers, at times, at full capacity. To sustain and grow these production levels we have to maintain our equipment to the highest standards,” Taylor said.

“Winter maintenance is all about getting off to a good start for the next season. It ensures that we continue to meet the demand from our customers and deliver our products on time.”

Te Rapa maintenance co-ordinator Trevor Bell says the work Fonterra does during this period sets the tone for the following season.

“Winter maintenance is our opportunity to set up the plant for the season ahead so it can run at maximum efficiency without unforeseen downtime which can cost us in lost production. Thorough maintenance also allows us to extend the life of our equipment.”

This year more than $70m is being spent on maintenance around NZ, with most going to the co-operative’s high capacity sites Whareroa in Taranaki, Edendale and Clandeboye in Southland and Te Rapa in Waikato.

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