Holland and Germany are set to benefit from New Zealand’s tarnished milk formula brand, says CEO of Kiwi milk powder manufacturer Peak Nutrition, Stephen Julian.
According to Julian, those two countries are already well positioned to benefit from New Zealand’s dairy issues and sign deals with some traditional Kiwi export partners like China.
“If you look at the global players, the Dutch market has been hot on our heels for a long time, they are renowned for their dairy production and have much to gain from our latest dairy crisis and Germany isn’t far behind,” says the CEO. “China is a critical market for us and this is not the first time we’ve been embroiled in a dairy scandal, we know how particular the Chinese are about standards and this will impact heavily on our industry as a whole.”
Julian says Holland currently exports around eight billion dollars in dairy products compared to New Zealand’s ten billion annually.
Peak Nutrition’s CEO says his milk powders are not affected by the crisis, as they are made using wet blend technology and produced and packaged locally.
He says the biggest victims are the parents. “Not only are these parents faced with a situation where they are unsure of which formula is safe for their child, the ongoing economic repercussions for the nation as a whole could be catastrophic.”
“It is sad to see our global reputation as one of the most trusted dairy producers damaged once again in such a high profile way. We have to hope that this crisis does not affect the New Zealand brand so gravely that it impacts our other primary food producers,” he adds.
Julian says he has been advocating for greater controls around labeling of these products.
“Product labels can be very misleading to parents who read them and think they are buying a Kiwi-made product when that’s simply not true at all,” he says.
“Sometimes all of the ingredients cannot be sourced in NZ as they are simply not produced or manufactured here, however this needs to be stated on labels so the consumer is aware and can make an informed decision and this is what we do on our own labels,” says Julian.
The label “Made in NZ” is still used without regulation on products that aren’t 100% manufactured and packed locally.