Friday, 02 February 2018 13:41

Westland forced to halt milk processing

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Westland says damage caused by ex-Tropical Cyclone Fehi has halted production at its Hokitika plant. Westland says damage caused by ex-Tropical Cyclone Fehi has halted production at its Hokitika plant.

Westland says damage caused by ex-Tropical Cyclone Fehi has halted production at its Hokitika plant.

In a statement, the West Coast-based co-op says the factory remains on limited power and is unable to process milk.

“All collected milk is being diverted to other dairy processors.

“At this stage we expect it will be 24 to 48 hours before we are fully operational again.”

The co-op was also unable to pick milk from Ikamatua and northern farms, Mt Hercules south and Runanga and north to Karamea; limited collection was done around Mt Hercules, Ikamatua and Springs Junction.

Additionally, some farmers are without electric power and are unable to maintain milk in their storage vats below the maximum required to retain quality and food safety.

This means some farmers will have to recycle milk to their effluent ponds or dispose onto land as they either reach storage capacity or have been unable to keep milk chilled to the required levels.

Westland is asking farmers, before disposing milk, to try to contact any of the following Westland staff to check on tanker availability: Wayne Climo 021 376 491, Doug Cochrane 027 434 1964, Taane Johnsen 027 886 2765, Penny McIntosh 027 886 2763 or Mark Martini 027 886 2764. 

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