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Mega Co Now A Certainty: DFNZ Chair


Chairman of Dairy Farmers of New Zealand Charlie Pedersen is confident that the Mega company will still go ahead. Commenting that merger talks between the NZ Dairy Group and Kiwi Dairy Co-operative had failed to reach agreement, Mr Pedersen urged farmers to encourage their companies to stay with the merger negotiations.

"The Mega company is clearly the preferred option of farmers," Mr Pedersen said. "Company negotiators would find that most farmers are far more amenable to bridging the gap between the two companies than they are being credited for."

"The announced forty cent per kilogram differential between the two companies was very encouraging news," said Mr Pedersen. "It shows that the companies are very close together and that a merger is definitely possible. Farmers now have figures in front of them about the relative positions of the two companies. They also have the conservative estimates of financial benefits in the Mega Company Business Plan."

"Furthermore, farmers are being consulted by their companies. This can only be positive," said Mr Pedersen. "Farmers will do their broad calculations and provide feedback to their company negotiators."

Mr Pedersen commented that farmers are very pragmatic and will look at the big picture. The gap between the companies is so close that he doubted that few farmers would have difficulty accepting the logic that the Mega company is a viable and attractive offer to all dairy farmers.

"The quick and successful conclusion to negotiations would also bring certainty back into the dairy industry, both domestically and internationally. Dairy farmers seek a basis on which to make long-term business decisions, and local economies are suffering because of the uncertainty. Mr Pedersen said that he was sure the same applied internationally.

"While the Dairy Board is doing its best for New Zealand farmers, its task is not being helped by competitors taking advantage of the confusion within the dairy industry."

"Those farmers and directors looking at the big picture will see that all New Zealand dairy farmers can be winners. I am sure farmers would back their negotiators to achieve a successful merger," concluded Mr Pedersen.

ENDS For further information: Charlie Pedersen 025-463-480 or 06-329-9896 Kevin Petersen 04-473-7269

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