New Zealand dairy giant Fonterra has revealed that it is to permanently reopen one of three milk-powder plants at Morrinsville on 1 September this year, to meet increasing demand for the product.

The move will see the creation of 30 new jobs and the production of 24,000 tonnes of whole milk powder during the 2002-2003 season.

The New Zealand Milk Products (NZMP) plant is the largest of the three plants. It was abandoned in 1999, reopened later that year for a short time, then closed until a burst of activity between September and December 2000.
Meanwhile, the cooperative came in for criticism when it emerged this week that its public relations chief Matthew Hooton had been living deluxe rooms in 5-star and 4 ½-star Auckland hotels for much of the past year, at the expense of Fonterra’s farmer members.

Hooton, who is due to leave the company next week, defended the cost saying that when he started working for Fonterra in June last year, his contract was only for three months.