web analytics

Westland Dairy sale

Written By: - Date published: 12:08 pm, March 20th, 2019 - 30 comments
Categories: Economy, farming, nz first, overseas investment, Shane Jones, winston peters - Tags:

Westland Dairy has done a deal to sell out to Yili industrial Group of Mongolia. 

Westland Milk Products is currently owned by 429 farmer-shareholders, and properly named the Westland Co-Operative Dairy Company Ltd. This is our third largest independent dairy company in New Zealand.

It is by a long, long way the most important business in Hokitika, and most important single business on the West Coast of the South Island. 

It processes approximately 3% of the country’s total milk production. 

There’s a quick history of Westland Dairy here … and with photographs here.

New Zealand’s west coaster dairy farmers built and grew local dairy farms and local ownership of their dairy processor and exporter for 150 long years, which they celebrate this year. 

It was one of the very last to hold out and assert their proud and very hard-won independence through all the industry restructures, all the mergers, all the stupidity over decades. 

In November 2018 this government lent Westland Milk Products $10 million. At the time of the loan, the Chief Executive Toni Brendish said that Westland needed to reduce its dependency on bulk dairy commodities.

In November 2018 this government lent Westland Milk Products $10 million. At the time of the loan, the Chief Executive Toni Brendish said that Westland needed to reduce its dependency on bulk dairy commodities.

We’ll do this by expanding our capacity to produce high value products, differentiated by the special qualities of the milk used to make them. This will include A2 milk and our new Ten Star premium standard milk.”

What Westland has done instead is increase this country’s dependency on foreign ownership. 

It truly pisses me off to see my taxpayer money propping up the balance sheet of the largest business on the west coast, to make it attractive for sale to foreigners.

Could Shane Jones and his officials not have had the nous to work with them on their real capital problems instead of offering Vodka to an alcoholic (ie short term capital to a long term capital deficit)?

I have nothing against Yili Industries of Mongolia. I have no idea who they are.  I am objecting in principle to the company choosing to go to foreign capital rather than a local source. 

I am objecting to Shane Jones being stupid with our taxpayer money.  I am objecting to the wilful gutting of local profit away from local owners of local farms to foreigners, whoever they are.

I am waiting for Shane Jones’ fund to show that New Zealand is an economically stronger place for the investment of our dollars into it, specifically from this loan.

Of course there is still a shareholder vote to go, and Overseas Investment Commission approval as well.

It would be great to see Winston Peters come out against it as strongly as he did against the sale of Silver Fern Farms in 2017 when they were in opposition. 

Or indeed anyone.

30 comments on “Westland Dairy sale ”

  1. Stuart Munro. 1

    Another altright incursion, targeting our cultural treasures: Snowflake icecream – the best vanilla in the country 🙁

  2. Barfly 2

    well this will contribute more to new zealand’s biggest export – profits from overseas owned companies 🙁

  3. greywarshark 3

    It was a co-operative – sacrificed that because selling to overseas high bidder would provide more capital. Perhaps they can do farm exchanges and show China how clever clogs can do it. The west coast developed a neat literal ground-breaker to better pasture. Are farmers clever enough to run NZ? When given unfettered power – give them an inch and they will take a mile. Pity there is no-one who has strategic vision in NZ.

    https://www.radionz.co.nz/news/country/385046/chinese-company-looks-set-to-buy-westland-milk

  4. Sabine 4

    well its a nice name, certainly better then state owned Compan of Dairy industry in China.

    Westland Dairy sale


    Yili Group (Chinese: 伊利集团, p Yīlì Jítuán; full name: Inner Mongolia Yili Industrial Group Company Limited) is a state-owned company of dairy industry in China. It is engaged in processing and manufacturing of milk products, including ice cream, milk tea powder, sterilized milk and fresh milk under “Yili” brand, powdered milk under “Pro-Kido” brand, and organic milk under “Satine” brand. It is headquartered in Hohhot, Inner Mongolia.[2][3] Its main competitor in China is Mengniu. In 2018, it is the world’s 3rd best-performing food brands.[4]

    Its head office is in the Jinchun Development Zone (金山开发区) in Hohhot.[5][6]

    The company was an official sponsor of the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yili_Group

    i would be very happy for this sale to not go through. It also appears that the Chinese Government via its state owned assetts is busy buying up a lot of other dairy related companies elsewhere.

    Maybe the government can nationalist this company here and call it Inner NZ Dairy company a wholly owned by NZ lest we all end up paying rent to China one day.

    • Sabine 4.1

      i have no idea why this picture is in my post? odd.

    • greywarshark 4.2

      Interesting that Beijing was hosting an Olympics in 2008.
      While the USA was overseeing the GFC that year.
      Quite a juxtaposition.

      The Chinese are becoming embedded in NZ. Perhaps they are going to turn up in our comments just to let us know that they know where we live and think.

      • Sabine 4.2.1

        they can turn up in our comments as much as htey like. seriously are we gonna spend the rest of our lifes afraid of totalitarian regimes?

  5. Enough is Enough 5

    What will our racist Deputy Prime Minister have to say about this?

    • Drowsy M. Kram 5.1

      Do you have anything to say about the proposed sale? I’m agin it.

    • Grunter 5.2

      Absolutely nothing. He’s too busy being quiet about all the Islamophobia he’s spouted in the last years.

  6. tc 6

    Shane Jones belongs in the national party with all the other pro corporate welfare brigade.

    He is arrogance personified.

    • alwyn 6.1

      “He is arrogance personified”
      That of course is the reason National refused to agree to Winston and his acolyte Shane being given $3,000,000,000.00 to finance their slush fund. Yes that really is the right number of zeroes.
      I don’t think NZF would ever have gone into Government with National of course. English and Joyce would never have allowed themselves to get into the position that an inexperienced and ill prepared Labour Party were. Labour were willing to give Winston anything at all that he asked for simply so that they could get their bums in the back of the beemers. Now it is New Zealand which suffers.

      • alwyn 6.1.1

        We are really being unfair to Shane when we pin all the blame on him.

        The loan is just under $10 million and at that level it would have to have been approved by Grant Robertson ans David Parker. What possessed them to agree?
        Who appointed those obvious “babes in the woods” to positions where they have control of an enormous taxpayer funded credit card?
        Surely someone is going to take responsibility for their appointment to jobs they are patently incapable of managing. Who did it?

        The loan was also carefully set at just under $10 million. At $10 million it has to go to Cabinet. Perhaps someone there might have asked questions. Alternatively of course the other Cabinet Ministers wanted to be able to deny any knowledge of the deal when the shit hit the fan.

        • Dukeofurl 6.1.1.1

          Well clearly they now wont get the money as their capital sheet problems are solved.

          The decisions by ministers are ‘approval in principal’ and there would be a lot of hoops to run through, and if its was for a special processing plant change , would only be for those specific invoices as they came in.
          And bank would work the same way if they were avoiding a general working capital top up.

        • Dukeofurl 6.1.1.2

          No fact checking today allwrong

          ‘Cabinet has oversight of the Provincial Growth Fund, and makes decisions about investments of $20 million or more.’ kaching
          Who was the babe swaddled in ignorance?-‘The loan was also carefully set at just under $10 million’
          https://www.growregions.govt.nz/about-us/governance/

          ‘The Independent Advisory Panel (IAP) provides independent advice to Ministers about Provincial Growth Fund investment proposals.
          Panel members have skills in commercial, industry, public policy, and sector-specific knowledge where relevant. They give feedback on applications for large sector projects, lend their commercial expertise to help assess business cases, and offer advice on the overall investment portfolio.’ kaching

          • alwyn 6.1.1.2.1

            My information was clearly out of date.
            I wonder when it was changed?

            The numbers I remember were from when it was set up. From a Cabinet Paper.
            “In December 2017, Cabinet agreed to a set of delegations for the Fund that effectively set up three bands – Senior Regional Officials (for up to $1 million), delegated Ministers (between $1 and $10 million) and Cabinet (over $10 million).”
            https://www.growregions.govt.nz/assets/content/public-information/cabinet-paper-feb-2018.pdf

            That was in February 2018. I’ve never personally had anything to do with them, and if I was a politician I would keep a long, long way away from the slippery Mr Jones.
            I can only assume that Shane had much greater dreams and got the limits raised to match his grandiose dreams..
            Your figures still show that Grant and David went along with the Pooh-Bah from New Zealand First though.

            • alwyn 6.1.1.2.1.1

              I read a bit further into the limit setting.
              When the program was first proposed Shane, and his party, wanted a limit of $20 million before it had to go to Cabinet.
              Treasury, and the Labour Party, dug their heels in and insisted on $10 million.
              The fact that it shortly afterward went back to $20 million illustrates, very clearly, how Tsar Winston rules the roost. As the song in the old musical “Damn Yankees” goes.
              “Whatever Winston, wants Winston gets”
              Labour jumped to attention and gave him whatever he required.
              Why am I not surprised?

  7. Blazer 7

    Comment from a knowledgable sharetrader…

    ‘ the Americans came to NZ, bought Telecom (with the ‘help’ of Fay Richwhite etc) and proceeded to extract billions of dollars out of New Zealanders and leaving behind a buggered up Telco., one which could not even deliver UFB without government intervention.

    Korea rolled out its UFB in 2004. Guess when Telecom was going to roll out UFB in NZ if Helen Clark did not intervene?

    Did I read a lot of outcry about the Americans buying Telecom?

    Yup – exactly like how the Australians came over and bought up all our banks and then, proceeded to extract billions of dollars each year out of NZ and control the NZ economy.

    Did I read a lot of outcry over the Australians?

    Shall we talk about forestry and who really owns the forests planted decades ago through the sweat, tears and toil of New Zealanders?

    Did I read a lot of outcry about how we now export logs and jobs overseas?

  8. BNZ was one big ripoff how do you fuck a 150 year old bank in 2 years ?

    Ask Roger Douglas ?

    • alwyn 8.1

      The BNZ was a bank where the staff were basically civil servants from the days when the state owned it who all had delusions that they were “masters of the universe”.
      They would loan to anyone. They were the precursor of the elderly gentleman who tried the same thing when running SCF.
      Roger Douglas didn’t do it. They managed it all on their own.

  9. Rae 9

    If our important industries are to be government owned could they not, at least, be our own government?

  10. Dukeofurl 10

    “In November 2018 this government lent Westland Milk Products $10 million”

    It was aqn agreement to progress the building of some industrial process. I doubt the money has been transferred , as the officials work through the paperwork and Westland organised its food processing engineers to design and get a contractor to build it.

  11. cleangreen 11

    Some want to sell the whole country don’t they?

    Are we good patrons for our children’s future?

    I don’t think so; – as we are just sellouts when we agree to this.

  12. Ian 12

    The government allows the sale of a cooperative dairy company to Chinese interests for just under $600 million,a couple of hotels for over $100 million but I can’t sell them my townhouse in the city or my dairy farm for a comparative pittance. What’s going on folks?

  13. Pat 13

    One would hope that the 10 million is repaid upon sale with interest at market rate….and if it isnt then serious questions need to be asked

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Environment Court Judge appointed
    Prudence Steven QC, barrister of Christchurch has been appointed as an Environment Judge and District Court Judge to serve in Christchurch, Attorney-General David Parker announced today. Ms Steven has been a barrister sole since 2008, practising in resource management and local government / public law.    She was appointed a Queen’s ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    13 hours ago
  • Government moves on climate promises
    The Government is delivering on its first tranche of election promises to take action on climate change with a raft of measures that will help meet New Zealand’s 2050 carbon neutral target, create new jobs and boost innovation. “This will be an ongoing area of action but we are moving ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    16 hours ago
  • Jump starting research careers
    The Government is investing up to $10 million to support 30 of the country’s top early-career researchers to develop their research skills. “The pandemic has had widespread impacts across the science system, including the research workforce. After completing their PhD, researchers often travel overseas to gain experience but in the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    17 hours ago
  • Project protects jobs and nature
    A Waitomo-based Jobs for Nature project will keep up to ten people employed in the village as the tourism sector recovers post Covid-19 Conservation Minister Kiri Allan says. “This $500,000 project will save ten local jobs by deploying workers from Discover Waitomo into nature-based jobs. They will be undertaking local ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Minister Shaw speaks with U.S. Presidential Envoy John Kerry
    Minister for Climate Change, James Shaw spoke yesterday with President Biden’s Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John Kerry. “I was delighted to have the opportunity to speak with Mr. Kerry this morning about the urgency with which our governments must confront the climate emergency. I am grateful to him and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Minister of Foreign Affairs makes three diplomatic appointments
    Foreign Affairs Minister Hon Nanaia Mahuta today announced three diplomatic appointments: Alana Hudson as Ambassador to Poland John Riley as Consul-General to Hong Kong Stephen Wong as Consul-General to Shanghai   Poland “New Zealand’s relationship with Poland is built on enduring personal, economic and historical connections. Poland is also an important ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Major redevelopment of Wainuiomata High School underway
    Work begins today at Wainuiomata High School to ensure buildings and teaching spaces are fit for purpose, Education Minister Chris Hipkins says. The Minister joined principal Janette Melrose and board chair Lynda Koia to kick off demolition for the project, which is worth close to $40 million, as the site ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New expert group appointed to advise Government on Oranga Tamariki
    A skilled and experienced group of people have been named as the newly established Oranga Tamariki Ministerial Advisory Board by Children’s Minister Kelvin Davis today. The Board will provide independent advice and assurance to the Minister for Children across three key areas of Oranga Tamariki: relationships with families, whānau, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • COVID-19 vaccine slated for possible approval next week
    The green light for New Zealand’s first COVID-19 vaccine could be granted in just over a week, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said today. “We’re making swift progress towards vaccinating New Zealanders against the virus, but we’re also absolutely committed to ensuring the vaccines are safe and effective,” Jacinda Ardern said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New ACC Board members announced.
    The Minister for ACC is pleased to announce the appointment of three new members to join the Board of ACC on 1 February 2021. “All three bring diverse skills and experience to provide strong governance oversight to lead the direction of ACC” said Hon Carmel Sepuloni. Bella Takiari-Brame from Hamilton ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Economic boost for Southland marae
    The Government is investing $9 million to upgrade a significant community facility in Invercargill, creating economic stimulus and jobs, Infrastructure Minister Grant Robertson and Te Tai Tonga MP Rino Tirikatene have announced.  The grant for Waihōpai Rūnaka Inc to make improvements to Murihiku Marae comes from the $3 billion set ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Celebrating the Entry Into Force of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons
    [Opening comments, welcome and thank you to Auckland University etc] It is a great pleasure to be here this afternoon to celebrate such an historic occasion - the entry into force of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. This is a moment many feared would never come, but ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Supporting disabled people to stay connected
    The Government is providing $3 million in one-off seed funding to help disabled people around New Zealand stay connected and access support in their communities, Minister for Disability Issues, Carmel Sepuloni announced today. The funding will allow disability service providers to develop digital and community-based solutions over the next two ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Voluntary saliva testing offered to quarantine workers from Monday
    Border workers in quarantine facilities will be offered voluntary daily COVID-19 saliva tests in addition to their regular weekly testing, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. This additional option will be rolled out at the Jet Park Quarantine facility in Auckland starting on Monday 25 January, and then to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Next steps in firearms buy-back
    The next steps in the Government’s ambitious firearms reform programme to include a three-month buy-back have been announced by Police Minister Poto Williams today.  “The last buy-back and amnesty was unprecedented for New Zealand and was successful in collecting 60,297 firearms, modifying a further 5,630 firearms, and collecting 299,837 prohibited ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Jobs for Nature projects target iconic ecosystems
    Upscaling work already underway to restore two iconic ecosystems will deliver jobs and a lasting legacy, Conservation Minister Kiri Allan says.  “The Jobs for Nature programme provides $1.25 billion over four years to offer employment opportunities for people whose livelihoods have been impacted by the COVID-19 recession. “Two new projects ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Public Housing Plan announced
    The Government has released its Public Housing Plan 2021-2024 which outlines the intention of where 8,000 additional public and transitional housing places announced in Budget 2020, will go. “The Government is committed to continuing its public house build programme at pace and scale. The extra 8,000 homes – 6000 public ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Prime Minister congratulates President Joe Biden on his inauguration
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has congratulated President Joe Biden on his inauguration as the 46th President of the United States of America. “I look forward to building a close relationship with President Biden and working with him on issues that matter to both our countries,” Jacinda Ardern said. “New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Jobs for Nature funding will create training and employment opportunities
    A major investment to tackle wilding pines in Mt Richmond will create jobs and help protect the area’s unique ecosystems, Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor says. The Mt Richmond Forest Park has unique ecosystems developed on mineral-rich geology, including taonga plant species found nowhere else in the country. “These special plant ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Pre-departure testing extended to all passengers to New Zealand
    To further protect New Zealand from COVID-19, the Government is extending pre-departure testing to all passengers to New Zealand except from Australia, Antarctica and most Pacific Islands, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “The change will come into force for all flights arriving in New Zealand after 11:59pm (NZT) on Monday ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Bay Cadets learn skills to protect environment
    Bay Conservation Cadets launched with first intake Supported with $3.5 million grant Part of $1.245b Jobs for Nature programme to accelerate recover from Covid Cadets will learn skills to protect and enhance environment Environment Minister David Parker today welcomed the first intake of cadets at the launch of the Bay ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Cook Islanders to resume travel to New Zealand
    The Prime Minister of New Zealand Jacinda Ardern and the Prime Minister of the Cook Islands Mark Brown have announced passengers from the Cook Islands can resume quarantine-free travel into New Zealand from 21 January, enabling access to essential services such as health. “Following confirmation of the Cook Islands’ COVID ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Supporting communities and landowners to grow employment opportunities
    Jobs for Nature funding is being made available to conservation groups and landowners to employ staff and contractors in a move aimed at boosting local biodiversity-focused projects, Conservation Minister Kiritapu Allan has announced. It is estimated some 400-plus jobs will be created with employment opportunities in ecology, restoration, trapping, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Border exception for some returning international tertiary students
    The Government has approved an exception class for 1000 international tertiary students, degree level and above, who began their study in New Zealand but were caught offshore when border restrictions began. The exception will allow students to return to New Zealand in stages from April 2021. “Our top priority continues ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Tiwai deal gives time for managed transition
    Today’s deal between Meridian and Rio Tinto for the Tiwai smelter to remain open another four years provides time for a managed transition for Southland. “The deal provides welcome certainty to the Southland community by protecting jobs and incomes as the region plans for the future. The Government is committed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • New member for APEC Business Advisory Council
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has appointed Anna Curzon to the APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC). The leader of each APEC economy appoints three private sector representatives to ABAC. ABAC provides advice to leaders annually on business priorities. “ABAC helps ensure that APEC’s work programme is informed by business community perspectives ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Govt’s careful economic management recognised
    The Government’s prudent fiscal management and strong policy programme in the face of the COVID-19 global pandemic have been acknowledged by the credit rating agency Fitch. Fitch has today affirmed New Zealand’s local currency rating at AA+ with a stable outlook and foreign currency rating at AA with a positive ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Additional actions to keep COVID-19 out of NZ
    The Government is putting in place a suite of additional actions to protect New Zealand from COVID-19, including new emerging variants, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “Given the high rates of infection in many countries and evidence of the global spread of more transmissible variants, it’s clear that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • 19 projects will clean up and protect waterways
    $36 million of Government funding alongside councils and others for 19 projects Investment will clean up and protect waterways and create local jobs Boots on the ground expected in Q2 of 2021 Funding part of the Jobs for Nature policy package A package of 19 projects will help clean up ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago