Fonterra helps local milk farmers
Loans to increase milk supply base:
Fonterra Brands Lanka will increase their milk supply base to 6000
milk farmers within the next three years. Milk Procurement Manager for
Fonterra, H. M. P. Herath said at the moment they have 3000 milk farmers
in their supply base and expect to increase this amount to 6000 within
three years time.
“All these 3000 farmers provide 25,000 liters of fresh milk for the
company per day and we are planning to increase this to 50,000 liters
within three years.
“The fresh milk collected from these farmers will be utilised for our
Rs. 1.2 billion yoghurt plant which will commence operations next year”
“Our dairy farmers are spread in three districts. Kurunegala, Colombo
The company have provided loans worth Rs five million to the dairy
farmers and will increase this amount up to Rs 50 million coordinating
with the banks he said at the launch of Kiri Ithurum Mangallaya
programme held in Galle in collaboration with Livestock Development
“The milk processors don’t get enough milk for production. We are
confident that within three years we can increase milk collection and
the production. In Sri Lanka a cow provides three to six liters of milk
This needs to be increased upto five liters to 10 liters and the
company has also embarked on a project of cultivating sufficient grass
for the dairy industry with these farmers to increases milk production.
The company also provides technical know how and educates farmers
through workshops to increase the standard of milk, he said.
Fonterra Brands Lanka finds investor confidence high and the company
will invest further in the country, Human Resource Director, Fonterra
Brands Lanka, Roshan Kulasuriya said.
“We invested Rs 1.2 billion this year in the yoghurt plant at an
uncertain time. The expansion was done to cater to the demand we foresee
for the products and also to drive the demand.
Once the growth plans kicks in we will evaluate the conditions and
invest further. Uncertainty of inflation impacts the business. It hits
the consumers but this is a global issue,” Kulasuriya said.
“In New Zealand the farming community has a culture.
The shareholders of the business are farmers. But here it is
fragmented. Fonterra standards are high. We hope to build a replica of
Fonterra in Sri Lanka as our farming culture is eroded,” he said.
“The farmers have grown with us. Their standards have improved. When
you compare them with the global farming community they are not
relatively far away. The production at present is not sufficient.
Increasing the capacity will increase the farmers. We have collection
centres in Wariyapola, Dickoya, Hanwella and Talawakelle . They will be
expanded in the near future,” Kulasuriya said.
He added that the company holds over 50 per cent market share and
import 50,000 to 60,000 tons of powdered milk per year. Company could
not establish a milk powder plant in Sri Lanka due to the lack of a milk
supply base in the country.
Talking about milk powder prices in the global market, he said prices
are stabilised these days and prices depend on the weather conditions in
milk producing countries.
The Kiri Ithurum Mangallaya programme was organised to create
awareness among the public about the value of dairy products and promote
consumption of milk among schoolchildren. This was the first in a series
of regional competitions that will be held in six other provinces.