Megmilk Snow Brand, Japan’s leading dairy company, is to strengthen its business overseas. 

Preliminary plans include investing in new equipment for its plant in Tatura, Australia and exporting cheese from Japan to China. 

“We are facing a low birth rate and ageing population in Japan, so it is necessary for us to actively seek opportunities overseas for our future growth,” said a Tokyo-based spokesman. 

Megmilk expects a boost in production capacity after the Australian equipment upgrade. The plant manufactures milk powder to supply the Asia-Pacific region. 

In 2009, Megmilk earned about JPY5bn (US$59.9m) in export sales to Asia, the majority of which came from milk powder. 

“In the future, the [Australian] plant may also make soft drinks,” the spokesman said but declined to disclose more details. 

He said company was still finalising its China cheese export strategy. “There are many things we are just about to plan,” he said.