NORTHERN NSW's dairy giant Norco has already made its move following the historic China-Australia free trade agreement (FTA) announcement, pumping $4.5 million into an upgrade of its Raleigh milk factory.
Money will flow to Norco's Mid North Coast facility to ramp up fresh milk exports to China.
“We have been somewhat hamstrung with capacity issues at our factories but this capital upgrade, together with the government’s announcement this week, will improve our market access greatly,” Norco chairman and Goolmangar dairy farmer Greg McNamara said.
This week’s signing of an FTA with China came at a perfect time for the Lismore-based co-operative.
The deal will lead to the removal of all tariffs on Australian dairy products, which can be as high as 20 per cent, within four to 11 years.
It has been widely celebrated in the Australian dairy industry as a very positive development that would open significant, often lucrative, doors.
Norco blazed new trails earlier this year when it sent NSW’s first shipments of fresh milk to China and the decision by the co-operative’s board of directors to take that to the next level has certainly been vindicated by the FTA.
The business has recently secured an additional Chinese order for 90,000 litres.
Norco’s chief executive officer Brett Kelly said the recent market access breakthroughs and the China FTA were critically important in assisting Norco to provide its farmers with a more profitable future.