Fonterra opens sixth application centre for food development in China

Tuesday, 18 June, 2024

Fonterra opens sixth application centre for food development in China

As two sites at the heart of Fonterra’s Foodservice business celebrate their 10th anniversaries, the co-operative is announcing it will open its sixth application centre to meet growing demand.

In 2014, Fonterra opened its Waitoa UHT manufacturing site in the Waikato, which specialises in producing high-value cream products sought after by Fonterra’s Foodservice customers.

In the same year, Fonterra opened its first-ever application centre in Shanghai, which plays an important role in the co-op’s Foodservice business by enabling Fonterra to partner with local customers and develop product applications designed to meet local consumer tastes and trends.

Construction is now underway on Fonterra’s newest application centre in Wuhan, China, which is set to open later this year. This application centre will add to those already in Beijing, Chengdu, Guangzhou, Shanghai and Shenzhen.

CEO Miles Hurrell said Fonterra’s Greater China Foodservice business is a key part of the co-op’s value-add strategy, with the cream products produced at Waitoa UHT contributing strongly to this success.

“The formula for our foodservice whipping cream was developed by our expert team at Fonterra’s Research and Development Centre in Palmerston North and is an excellent example of how we use innovation to add value to farmers’ milk.

“This product alone is used in approximately 400 million beverages and 260 million cakes in Chinese bakery stores each year and we’ve seen a continued increase in demand since 2014.

“Our application centres play a pivotal role in driving innovation and tailoring Fonterra’s Foodservice offerings to the tastes, culture and trends of the area in which they’re located. They include different spaces and equipment to enable technical experts and experienced chefs to test and develop new products, often in collaboration with customers.

“The addition of a new application centre in China signals the continued growth we expect to see from our Greater China Foodservice business and this will likely lead to further growth in demand for our foodservice cream products, which we are well set up to cater for,” Hurrell said.

Fonterra’s Foodservice business is also growing in Southeast Asia, particularly in the bakery channel, with the emergence of specialty bakery and lifestyle cafes across the region. Like China, in-market chefs assist the team in developing new local applications based on consumer needs.

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