There may be some things you might not know about Synlait. We thought it would be a good idea to share them with you. We hope you find them interesting.
Differentiated Milk Supply
Our differentiated milk supply is what sets Synlait apart, and it’s something we’re very proud of. Special milk programmes require farmers to add value behind the farm gate for our customers, such as a2 and Munchkin. We recognise this value by paying premiums on top of our base milk price. This differentiated supply enables us to manufacture specialty products which have a higher value, and in this way we can turn milk into something more valuable.
Almost all of our milk suppliers are located within an 80km radius of Synlait. We have approximately 200 milk suppliers with an average herd size of 750. They supply us with more than 700 million litres of milk per year. Milk suppliers are typically contracted on a rolling three year basis. We have 50 milk suppliers demonstrating best practice dairy farming through our Lead With Pride™ certification programme.
Research and Category Development
Category Development has become a very important part of what we do here at Synlait. To become the world’s most innovative and trusted dairy company, we are assembling a pipeline of opportunities to unlock further potential from our manufacturing process. One big opportunity has been the establishment of our research and development centre in Palmerston North alongside Massey University and FoodPILOT. Here we will have the best minds and equipment available to help us make the most of milk. We have also invested in category management capability at Synlait Dunsandel to support increased business development in existing and new categories. We have a Category Group Manager at our Dunsandel site to lead the way as we continue to plan our growth.
Synlait Dunsandel processes more than 700 million litres of milk each year. It is capable of processing 4.2 million litres of raw milk per day, from which up to 440 metric tonnes of milk powder can be produced. We have three leading-edge milk powder dryers, and a purpose-built infant formula facility, the largest and most sophisticated in the Southern Hemisphere. The two infant dryers can each process up to seven tonnes of infant milk powder per hour.
Consumer Packaging is a fast expanding part of our business, and we’re growing our capacity to keep up with customer demand. We operate a state of the art facility in Dunsandel that produces 120 cans a minute, and will shortly commission a second facility of the same standard and size in Auckland.
We also launched our fourth blending and consumer packaging shift at Synlait Dunsandel, meaning we’re now operational 24/7.
Quality Testing Laboratory
In 2013 we built our own laboratory, and now we’re able to complete most of our product testing requirements on-site. We have a dedicated chemistry laboratory, a microbiology laboratory, a pathogen laboratory, and also have in-process laboratories inside each dryer. Having our own in-house laboratory gives us greater control and visibility around our products, as well as giving us the benefit of having substantial technical competence on-site.
We have a strong regulatory team here at Synlait, which includes a dedicated staff member at our office in Shanghai. The team is currently working through the new Chinese infant formula regulations, to register all of our brands with the Certification and Accreditation Administration of the People’s Republic of China (CNCA). We’re also working hard to get registration for the Munchkin Grass Fed™ product with the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA). We already have a Generally Recognised as Safe (GRAS) notice for our lactoferrin which means we can export the nutraceutical product to the U.S, and include it in products such as Grass Fed™.
Our customer partnerships are built on a commitment to creating shared value over the long term. Our balanced portfolio of nutritional customers features a mix of established and emerging infant formula brands with differentiated nutritional propositions. We have established a global reputation as a trusted manufacturer of a diverse range of specialty milk powders. As a result, our business with multinational customers continues to grow as we enter new markets throughout Asia to meet their increased demand.
Behind our Value Chain
We employ more than 550 people who are the driving force behind our organisation’s success. Our people have extensive experience and expertise across all areas of our supply chain. From farming and farm management to manufacturing and product development, through to sales and customer service. This expertise means we guarantee world-class quality products. Our New Zealand teams are located in Dunsandel, Auckland and Palmerston North.