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Synlait sticks by FY21 guidance despite suppliers suffering flood damage

3rd June 2021 By Staff Reporter | | @foodtickernz

Synlait Milk says it has been challenging collecting milk from its suppliers but it did not expect flood disruptions to have a material impact on its FY21 production plans.

The company, which is based at Dunsandel, about 45km north of the damaged Ashburton River/ Hakatere Bridge on SH1, said flooding has caused significant damage to several farms in its network.

Chief executive John Penno said in a statement to the NZX that the immediate focus would be on supporting its milk suppliers and then looking at ways to assist with the clean up on the farms affected.

“Our thoughts are with our farmer suppliers, many of whom have been badly affected by the flooding,” said Penno.

“Our focus will be on supporting them as best as we can, as soon as the weather clears.”

The company said it did not expect the flood disruption to change its FY21 guidance outlook. The company said in May that it expected to make an after tax loss of between $20m – $30m in FY21.

Synlait’s Dunsandel plant returned to normal operations on Monday and said no milk had been lost despite collection being challenging due to road closures.

The damaged Ashburton River/ Hakatere Bridge is a vital connection southwards on SH1 for Synlait’s tankers and there were hopes today that it would soon re-open to heavy vehicles.

Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency has re-opened the bridge, which was initially closed on Tuesday morning for stress testing, but only for light vehicles.

The bridge was closed on Wednesday night for a couple of hours from 6pm for further testing and Waka Kotahi said it would make a decision this morning on whether to open to all vehicles.

The bridge is a vital link between Christchurch and the lower half of the South Island for food and beverage distributors.



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