Kyvalley Dairy Group has hit the big time with its first supermarket contract for domestic markets in a large part of Victoria.
While the company has seen its products on the shelves of small independents such as IGA in a few locations, the deal with Aldi is its first with a national, let alone international, supermarket chain.
Director Wayne Mulcahy said the company had not actively sought to work with supermarkets on a large scale before.
He said they were approached by Aldi and the proposal was one they could work with.
‘‘Aldi has two major distribution centres for Victoria; one at Derrimut covers the west of the state, and Dandenong the east,’’ Mr Mulcahy said.
‘‘We will be supplying the Derrimut centre so our milk, under the Farmdale brand, will be on a lot of Victorian supermarket shelves.
‘‘A lot of effort goes into satisfying Aldi’s requirements and making this happen so it was nice to get a result.
‘‘It’s also great news for the whole company and it means we can hire 15 new staff.’’
Kyvalley Dairy Group currently employs 150 people across its farms, factories and in Geelong.
Mr Mulcahy said he was feeling positive about the company’s future and he said between their own production and their growing network of suppliers, they hoped to process about 70million litres this year.
He said that would be an all-time high, but with the way the business was going, each year it hit record levels.
‘‘We’ve got a bright future ahead. We’ve seen significant growth in the past five years and have taken advantage of some great opportunities.
‘‘It seems to work when you are actually helping customers and suppliers; making sure everyone is looked after.’’
Kyvalley Dairy Group announced a drought assistance package late last year, which saw an immediate increase in prices for milk suppliers in the Kyabram region to help offset climatic conditions.
Mr Mulcahy said the package represented a ‘‘significant’’ increase.
‘‘It’s not tokenistic — it’s a reasonable amount that makes a difference and it’s not just a once-off, it will continue every month until the end of next season,’’ he said.
‘‘At the end of the day we are committed to supporting our local communities and we think it’s right for us to step in and assist.
‘‘We’re confident by making this bonus payment, it will likely enable the suppliers to change their planning decisions, and the planning decisions we’re looking for are the ones where they maintain their milk supply.’’