Dairy co-operative Fonterra has announced it's winding down a joint venture in India, saying Covid-19 has caused significant disruption to the market.
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The 50-50 joint venture got underway in 2018 and involved the country’s largest consumer retail company – Future Consumer Limited. It saw Fonterra launch the Dreamery brand, which included a range of yogurt and milkshakes made using Indian milk.

Fonterra’s Asia Pacific chief executive, Judith Swales, said the co-op entered the joint venture as a capital light way to test the market. The decision announced today would impact 22 employees, all of which will receive appropriate entitlements, she said.

“The last few years have been challenging for the joint venture with Covid-19 causing significant disruption to the Indian market.”

“We will continue to have a presence in India through Anchor Food Professionals and our Ingredients business, and will explore opportunities to grow access for our New Zealand milk as they come up,” Swales said.

India was a large dairy consuming population but there was restrictive trade access for New Zealand dairy, she said.

This was the second time Fonterra had tried its hand in the Indian market, an eight year partnership with Bangalore-based Britannia Industries ended in 2009.

This as-told-to essay is based on a conversation with Simmy Decker, 21, a health policy research assistant in Boston. The following has been edited for length and clarity.

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