New Zealand’s Alliance Group, a meat-based farmer cooperative, is investing in a plant in the south of the country to produce value-added products for domestic and global markets.

The new processing line is planned at the co-op’s existing site in Lorneville near Invercargill, which is located in the Southland region and will increase its capacity for fresh and tempered lamb. Around 40 jobs are expected to be created from the NZD1m (US$657,700) investment project.

Alliance also processes beef and venison destined for 65 countries, although the new value-added line will initially target customers in its home market, followed by China and foodservice outlets in the UK, according to a statement, which did not provide specific details of the products in question.

just-food has contacted the company for more information on the new product range. Its existing portfolio consists of the brands Pure South, Ashley, Te Mana, Silere and Handpicked.

David Surveyor, the company’s chief executive, said: “The co-operative is experiencing considerable growth in these sectors and we see significant opportunities in the future. A key part of our business strategy is capturing greater market value for our products so that we can pass those gains onto our farmer-shareholders and create a stronger co-operative.”

The investment will include new lines for automatic slicing, dicing and mincing, along with a range of packaging technologies to suit customer needs.

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By GlobalData

Alliance claims to be the largest employer in the Southland region, with almost 2,000 people at the Lorneville site alone. The same plant opened a venison facility last year following a NZD15.9m investment.