Victoria, Australia-based dairy processor Murray Goulburn Co-operative has recorded a record profit for the 2001 fiscal year.

Managing director Stephen O’Rouke commented yesterday [Thursday] that the operating profit of A$50.4m (US$25m), compared with A$29.7m in 2000, is the highest ever posted by the group. Murray Goulburn has also just paid record milk prices to its supplier shareholders.

The results also included sales worth A$1.6bn and exports of A$1.1bn.

About 3,500 dairy farmers, the majority of which are from Victoria, own the cooperative.