By Ben Collins
WELLINGTON, New Zealand–Synlait Milk (SML.NZ) on Thursday opened a new kitchen facility that the company expects will double its annual production of infant formula to 80,000 metric tonnes.
The New Zealand-based company is a production partner of the A2 Milk Co. (ATM.NZ) whose share price has more than tripled since this time last year, after strong demand for its infant formula product.
Synlait said in a regulatory filing it has invested 37 million New Zealand dollars ($25.4 million) in the new “Wetmix” kitchen that allows it to run both of its large-scale dryers at the same time. It has been planning the new facility since late 2015.
“We were at the point where our current Wetmix facility was at capacity, and our consumer demand was continuing to grow. Building this new Wetmix kitchen will relieve that pressure,” chief executive John Penno said.
The kitchen is where dry ingredients such as dairy proteins, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals are mixed into the liquid milk.
That mixture is then sent to the dryer, where it is dried into infant formula base powder.
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