Fonterra’s DairiConcepts acquires Swiss Valley Farms

Posted by Nicole Eckersley on 2nd June 2010

DairiConcepts, a US venture between New Zealand’s Fonterra and Dairy Farmers of America, has acquired the US-based Italian hard cheese business of Swiss Valley Farms.

The business, acquired from Swiss Valley Farms’ Rochester Cheese, produces fresh and dry grated hard Italian cheeses for private-label customers.

The deal includes Rochester’s plant at Dalbo, Minnesota. Ownership of a second plant at Spring Valley, Minnesota will remain with Rochester and hard Italian cheese production there will be moved to Dalbo.

Fonterra said that the move would diversify the company’s product and customer mix as well as cementng DairiConcepts’ position as the number two Italian hard cheese manufacturer in the US.

“It will provide a number of strategic benefits and synergies for DairiConcepts, and therefore for Fonterra and its shareholders,” Fonterra global ingredients and foodservice MD Andrei Mikhalevsky said.

Neil Stockman, DairiConcepts VP of hard Italian cheese, added that the deal would provide a platform for future growth.

“The acquisition of Rochester Cheese’s sales and marketing platform fits nicely with our current hard Italian cheese strategy, providing resources we will need to support the future of this growing category of our business,” he said.

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