Projects under way at Stirling cheese factory

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Work is continuing at the Fonterra Stirling cheese factory, where two major projects are under way.

The whey factory upgrade is scheduled to be completed by early October and detailed planning has already begun on the huge site electrification project, which should be completed within the next three to six years.

General manager of Fonterra’s lower South Island operations Richard Gray said the upgrade of whey-processing equipment was needed to meet the tighter quality standards required to allow the manufacturing of more advanced ingredients.

The upgrade would allow whey products to become more suitable for medical and infant formula-type applications.

Stirling-Edendale environment manager Hannah Furze said her team was extremely proud the site, the company’s largest cheddar factory in the country, had been selected as the first to be changed from coal to electric-thermal generation.

Mr Gray said electrification of the site was driven by the co-operative’s desire to improve its energy efficiency and be completely energy-efficient by 2020 and emission-neutral by 2050.