ACM confirm interest in buying MG plant

By Country News

Despite ongoing discussions between Saputo and the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, ACM has confirmed it is interested in buying Murray Goulburn’s Koroit factory.

The plant’s future became news after the ACCC released a ‘statement of issues’ earlier this month addressing concerns that if Saputo bought the factory as part of its potential takeover of Murray Goulburn, it could lessen competition in Victoria’s south-west.

The ACCC said Saputo’s Allansford plant and Murray Goulburn’s Koroit plant would have more than two-thirds of the raw milk processing capacity in south-west Victoria and south-east South Australia.

‘‘Our view is that Saputo owning the Koroit plant would substantially lessen competition for the acquisition of dairy farmers’ raw milk in the region,’’ ACCC chairman Rod Sims said.

There is speculation a number of companies are looking at the Koroit plant, but only ACM has confirmed its interest.

‘‘We would be interested in having a look at the options once plans are clearer,’’ ACM managing director Michael Auld said.

‘‘We have milk in the western region and if we can add to our product mix and tap into opportunities, we could add to the value pool of our farmers,’’ Mr Auld said.

‘‘We are interested but it’s a long way between now and putting a formal bid in.’’