Dairy / dairy-free news (update 7): Fonterra requests its smallholders to limit the use of palm kernel expeller / PKE to 3 kg per animal per day. Wilmar says PKE sales to NZ are under 1% of revenue. Back news - NZ palm kernel imports picked up to 222,413 tonnes in Nov 2015

Some interesting shifts in the dairy/non-dairy sector: "Rinehart’s dairy will seek to use labeling that would allow customers to check the specific animals that produced milk used to create each package of powder." We'll start to accumulate newsy things on infant formula and other dairy/non-dairy products. Of course some palm oil is also used in infant formula and other milk replacements as the folk in specialty fats does formulation work for non-dairy alternatives. Also notable that Iran has been shifting policy to reduce dairy-free replacements with palm oil and others.

20 Feb 2016: Back news - NZ palm kernel imports picked up to 222,413 tonnes in Nov 2015

Editor's note: Indeed, Fonterra reported some 2 million tonnes of PKE under RSPO certification in 2014

NZ - Palm kernel imports jump Dec 30, 2015; Palm kernel imports picked up sharply last month, despite the efforts of Fonterra and Greenpeace to curtail its use.... Imports of the controversial livestock feed supplement, which is used extensively in the dairy industry, came to 222,413 tonnes last month, up from 138,763 tonnes in October and 178,381 tonnes in November last year, according to Statistics NZ data....  Fonterra in September launched a campaign to get farmers to pull back on using palm kernel because too much can alter the composition of milk. Greenpeace has for many years put pressure on Fonterra to stop using palm products, linked to deforestation and peat drainage.... http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11567302

4 Jan 2016: Fonterra requests its smallholders to limit the use of palm kernel expeller / PKE to 3 kg per animal per day. Wilmar says PKE sales to NZ are under 1% of revenue.

Note: Ambank briefing reports as follows, "Wilmar said that its sales of palm kernel expeller to New Zealand accounts for less than 1% of group revenue." Greenpeace's report in December 2015 raises concerns that policies for "no deforestation" by big traders has yet to work (refer to 4 Jan posting: http://khorreports-palmoil.blogspot.my/2015/10/jokowi-and-2015-haze-step-down-on.html) and it is notable too that Greenpeace's Naidoo stepped down in December 2015. Watchers will be looking out for policy shifts at Greenpeace on palm oil supply-chains, including The Forest Trust traceability schemes for the large commodity traders. 

Fight against palm snares unexpected users: New Zealand dairy farmers WELLINGTON  |  By Rebecca Howard Dec 23, 2015; The world's biggest dairy exporter, New Zealand's Fonterra, has found itself caught in the crossfire of an unexpected new controversy: a global environmental campaign against the destruction of rainforests. The South Pacific island nation, which prides itself on its green image, has become a top buyer of palm kernel expeller or PKE, a by-product of the palm oil industry, which is under attack over deforestation, choking fires and habitat destruction in Southeast Asia. ... For New Zealand dairy farmers palm kernel has been a "lifesaver" by boosting production when grass is sparse, said Chris Engel, who runs 400 cows in the Wairarapa region on the southern tip of the North Island. "It has been a fantastic supplement for farmers facing a drought and you can just ring up and get a truck load when you need it," he said.... But environmentalists say the product - what's left of the palm kernel once the oil has been extracted - contributes to the profitability of the palm industry and have called on Fonterra to stop using PKE linked to environmental damage.... Unlike in Europe and North America, New Zealand dairy cows spend their lives outdoors, eating mostly grass. But imports of PKE, a dry, gritty meal with a soapy smell, have risen 10-fold over the past decade as farming has become more intensified and the use of supplementary feed has surged to ramp up production. "A third of all PKE that's traded in the world goes to New Zealand," said Russel Norman, executive director at Greenpeace New Zealand. "New Zealand is spending over NZ$400 million ($270 million) a year on PKE and so it's a significant profit center for the palm industry."... Recently Fonterra called on its 10,500 farmer shareholders to limit the use of palm kernel to 3 kg per animal per day. Farmers say cows can need up to 6kg of the supplementary feed per day when conditions are dry.... http://www.reuters.com/article/us-fonterra-dairy-idUSKBN0U705820151224

Fonterra - Palm Kernel Expeller (PKE) webpage: PKE sold by Fonterra’s subsidiary RD1 is bought from INL, who import it from a single source, Wilmar International. Wilmar practices a “no burn” policy, respects designated conservation areas, employs wildlife protection experts, and is on target to complete RSPO certification audits for all their plantation operations by 2015. Wilmar recently announced that it no longer develops plantations on peat-land....https://www.fonterra.com/nz/en/Recycle+Bin/Sustainability/Environment/Palm+Kernel+Expeller+(PKE)

Earlier news links

  • Fonterra wants farmers to cut back on palm kernels by GERARD HUTCHING September 21 2015; Fonterra is trying to persuade farmers to use fewer palm kernel supplements because it says milk from grass-fed cows fetches a premium on world markets. The dairy giant is recommending farmers feed a maximum of 3 kilograms of palm kernels per cow per day.... The advice has been greeted warily by former Federated Farmers Waikato dairy spokesman Craig Littin."Farmers would like to see evidence for a premium. If that's what markets are demanding, then fine. If not, they should leave farmers to farm and them [processors] to process," Littin said. At $200-$230 a tonne, palm kernel was the cheapest imported feed, he said....  ... Fonterra group director co-operative affairs Miles Hurrell said consumers globally were driving a trend towards dairy products that were sourced from pasture-based milk. "We are in a unique position to make the most of this trend to enhance returns to our farmers who are already renowned for producing the best milk in the world. This recognition is a direct result of our farmers' pasture-based farming model."This gives us a key competitive advantage globally. Our milk products have an excellent reputation and we want to maintain that, and stay ahead of increasing consumer expectations.... http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/farming/agribusiness/72272820/Fonterra-wants-farmers-to-cut-back-on-palm-kernels
  • Palm kernel protest won't shift Fonterra or PM  17 Sep 2009; Both Prime Minister John Key and dairy giant Fonterra are turning a deaf ear to Greenpeace activists' demands following yesterday's dramatic protest off the Port of Tauranga. Up to 14 Greenpeace protesters boarded the Hong Kong-registered freighter East Ambition, lashing themselves to cranes and the anchor, preventing the ship from docking. They were protesting Fonterra's importation of palm kernel for use as stock feed because of its role in the destruction of rainforests, predominantly in Malaysia and Indonesia.... http://www.3news.co.nz/nznews/palm-kernel-protest-wont-shift-fonterra-or-pm-2009091707#ixzz3wGD838ab

13 Dec 2015: Fonterra and PK. Russia and Iran issues.

Fonterra to meet with Greenpeace 26 November 2015 Fonterra and Greenpeace will meet next week to discuss concerns about palm kernel expeller and major fires in Indonesia.... http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/rural/290586/fonterra-to-meet-with-greenpeace

Fonterra 'linked to rainforest destruction' 21 November 2015 Greenpeace is accusing Fonterra of being directly linked to deforestation in Indonesia through the importation of palm kernel... http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/290234/fonterra-'linked-to-rainforest-destruction'

On Russia and Iran issues - get in touch to find out more.

22 May 2015: infant formula shows China’s remarkable demand slows, earlier data on slowing and intense competition in instant noodles

Interesting to note the slowdown in instant noodles and now infant formula too...

Party over for infant formula firms as China’s remarkable demand slows By RJ Whitehead, 19-May-2015 The “easy money has been made” for Chinese and international infant formula companies as they prepare for the rush for powdered baby food to tail off over the next five years after a decade’s stratospheric growth. http://www.foodnavigator-asia.com/Markets/Party-over-for-infant-formula-firms-as-China-s-remarkable-demand-slows

UPDATE 1-China food giant Tingyi's sales and profit skid on slowdown, competition By Adam Jourdan Mon Mar 23, 2015 1:54am EDT  * Tingyi 2014 net profit down 2 pct, trails forecasts * Annual sales fall for first time since 1998 * Competition in market "intense" - Chairman * Analysts eye boost in 2015 from lower input prices (Adds chairman's comment, earnings details, context)
SHANGHAI, March 23 (Reuters) - China's largest food and beverage maker, Tingyi Holding Corp, said net profit slid 2 percent in 2014, falling well below estimates, as a slowing economy and fierce competition dragged sales down for the first time in almost two decades. Hong Kong-listed Tingyi, owner of the Master Kong brand and a partner with PepsiCo Inc and Starbucks Corp in China, said on Monday profit for the year fell to $400.5 million from $408.5 million a year earlier. ......Tingyi said total revenue was $10.2 billion for the year, down from $10.9 billion a year earlier, the first sales drop since 1998. The number was squeezed by a 4.5 percent drop in instant noodle sales, which accounted for 40.4 percent of revenue, and a 7.5 percent drop in beverage sales, contributing 56.7 percent of revenue. Analysts have said lower materials prices and Tingyi's advantage of scale over rivals - it commanded around a third of China's noodle market last year, according to Euromonitor - could help it soak up slowing domestic economic growth in 2015. The firm competes with Uni-President China Holdings Ltd and Want Want China Holdings Ltd, which announced an almost 10 percent drop in full-year net profit last week. http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/03/23/tingyi-results-idUSL3N0WP2T420150323

16 February 2015: Coca-Cola produces Fairlife premium milk, filtered and adjusted for 50% more protein, 30% more calcium and 50% less sugar

Got Coke? Soda maker starts selling 'premium milk' by Associated Press February 3, 2015, 4:02 PM
Coca-Cola is coming out with premium milk that has more protein and less sugar than regular milk. And it's betting people will pay twice as much for it..... The national rollout of Fairlife over the next several weeks marks Coke's entry into the milk case in the U.S. and is one way that the world's biggest beverage maker is diversifying its offerings as Americans continue turning away from soft drinks.... It also comes as people increasingly seek out some type of functional boost from their foods and drinks, whether it's more fiber, antioxidants or protein. That has left the door open for Coke to step into the milk category, where the differences between options remain relatively minimal and consumption has been declining for decades.... "It's basically the premiumization of milk," Sandy Douglas, president of Coca-Cola North America, said at an analyst conference in November. If developed properly, Douglas said, it is the type of product that "rains money.".... Fairlife, which Coca-Cola formed in partnership with dairy cooperative Select Milk Producers in 2012, says its milk goes through a filtration process that's akin to the way that skim milk is made. Filters are used to separate the various components in milk. Then more of the favorable components are added, while the less desirable ones are kept out. The result is a drink that Fairlife says is lactose free and has 50% more protein, 30% more calcium and 50% less sugar than regular milk.... The same process is used make Fairlife's Core Power, a drink marketed to athletes that has even more protein and calcium than Fairlife milk..... http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-coke-milk-20150203-story.html

22 Dec 2014: Palm oil free labels on infant milk cans

‘Palm Oil Free labels damaging for Malaysia’ By OOI TEE CHINGKUALA - 21 December 2014 @ 11:59 PM; THE spreading of “No Palm Oil” or “Palm Oil Free” campaign, first in Europe and now in Singapore, is potentially damaging for Malaysia, said National Association of Smallholders (Nash) of Malaysia. “It has come to this part of the world,’’ Nash secretary-general Zulkifli Mohd Nazim said, showing Business Times photographs of infant milk cans taken at a supermarket in Singapore with highly visible “Palm Oil Free’’ signages on them. He said the public is being misled into believing that saturated fats in palm oil are bad when in reality they are necessary in a balanced diet.....

14 November 2014: Gina Rinehart to produce traceable infant milk for China

China’s Hungry Infants Sought in Rinehart Formula Switch  By David Stringer and Stephen Engle  Nov 14, 2014 7:57 AM GMT+0800; "Gina Rinehart, chairwoman of Hancock Prospecting Pty. Gina Rinehart, the Australian billionaire who built her fortune on iron ore, is planning a A$500 million ($435 million) investment to supply infant formula to a Chinese market forecast to almost double over three years.... Hope Dairies Ltd., controlled by Rinehart’s closely held Hancock Prospecting Ltd., is seeking to acquire about 5,000 hectares (12,400 acres) of farmland in Queensland state and is targeting first production in the second half of 2016, according to co-investor and director Dave Garcia........A free-trade deal with China, seen boosting dairy exports, may be signed next week, Australia’s Prime Minister Tony Abbott said in a Nov. 10 interview.... The market in China for infant formula may grow to NZ$33 billion ($26 billion) by 2017 from about NZ$18 billion ($14 billion) now, according to Fonterra Co-operative Group Ltd., the world’s biggest dairy exporter.
Rinehart’s planned operation would employ about 400 people, adhere to stringent biosecurity standards and produce about 70 to 75 percent of its own milk from a herd of about 16,000 Holstein cattle, including 10,500 milkers, according to Garcia. The Van Diemen’s Land Co. has Australia’s biggest dairy operation, milking about 19,000 cows on holdings in Tasmania... China in May tightened standards on imported formula following concerns over contamination. Fonterra had exports of two products suspended for 15 months from August 2013 after a botulism scare that was later proved to have been a false alarm. In 2008, locally-made milk powder contaminated with the chemical melamine killed at least six infants in China.... Rinehart’s dairy will seek to use labeling that would allow customers to check the specific animals that produced milk used to create each package of powder, Garcia said.... Milk producers are also expanding exports, with Norco Co-operative Ltd. agreeing to more than double fresh milk sales into China and Bega Cheese Ltd. striking a distribution deal to supply UHT milk to the nation.... Expansions by domestic infant formula producers in China risk moving the market into oversupply, UBS AG analysts led by Christine Peng wrote in a June 7 note. Total consumption in China may peak in 2018, according to Macquarie Group Ltd...."