The New Zealand joint venture Dairy Trust is to make a takeover offer for local dairy group Open Country Cheese.

The takeover is part of the establishment of Dairy Trust, a venture between New Zealand meat processor AFFCO and three other shareholders, Dairy Investment Fund Limited, Balle Bros Holdings and Waipahi Dairy Farms.

The consideration offered by Dairy Trust will be 1.68 Dairy Trust shares for every one Open Country share. The proposed offer values the shares in OCC at NZ$2.25 (US$1.65) a share and the shares in Dairy Trust at NZ$1.34 a share.

Open Country shareholders holding 50.1% of the business need to accept the Dairy Trust offer for it to go ahead.