The usual milking season goes from about October to May and over winter farmers were paid a premium if they decided to calve in Autumn and supply milk during the winter period.

Fonterra chair John Wilson said the increased investment in the mozzarella plant at Clandeboye and the UHT cream plant in Waikato was driving demand.

Fonterra was currently out and about talking to farmers about providing winter milk, said Mr Wilson.

“These are decisions taken 18 months out as farmers start thinking about adapting their systems.

“It doesn’t work for all of our farmers, it only works for some and if they choose to milk their cows over the winter then we’ve certainly got demand for that product.”

Mr Wilson said farmers milking through winter were paid accordingly.

“We will be rewarding our farmers based on what the market return is and also getting a strong return to the cooperative.”

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