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Fonterra Shareholders Show Resolve

5 May 2005

Fonterra Shareholders Show Resolve

Dairy Farmers of New Zealand Chairman Kevin Wooding has welcomed the results of a shareholder poll which will allow Fonterra Co-operative Group to modify its capital structure.

"This is a decisive vote for change. Shareholders have spent nearly a year studying the detail and listening to the reasoning, attended many public meetings, engaged in public debate, and deliberated with neighbours.

"Armed with a solid understanding of what the proposed changes mean, farmers have voted with a resolve that will ensure without doubt the implementation of these important resolutions.

Fonterra's 12,000 shareholders today gave their board a mandate to replace peak notes and share redemption rights, and opens the door to contract milk suppliers. These changes were passed after a robust consultative process that led to good proposals before shareholders.

"This process illustrates that a co-operative structure, when managed well to achieve the best outcomes for shareholders and other stakeholders, can work effectively.

"I would hope that Fonterra has learned a lot from this whole process, one which will no doubt be repeated in future as further modifications are seen necessary.

"Fonterra operates in a dynamic and competitive global market, so it must be encouraged to put forward further changes that are necessary to ensure it remains a strong co-operative with a solid future."

Dairy Farmers of New Zealand is the dairy industry group of Federated Farmers of New Zealand (Inc).

ENDS

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