A Cadbury executive has flagged the possibility of a
three-fold increase in the production of crumb at the
company's Dunedin factory.
The factory yearly produces 13,000 tonnes of crumb - the
milk, sugar and cocoa base for chocolate - in a $20 million
plant set up about two years ago.
However, Australia-New Zealand managing-director Mark
Callaghan said production could be increased to 45,000
"That's very much in our forward plans."
Dunedin crumb was already being sent to Australia, Pakistan,
China and Malaysia, and it was the company's intention for
Dunedin to supply "a lot more" to Australia.
Cadbury corporate communication manager Daniel Ellis said
last night a three-fold increase in crumb production would
require "very little increase" in the number of staff because
of the efficiency of the new equipment.
However, if new crumb-making facilities and milk plant needed
to be installed "then it is likely there would be new jobs
The existing plant is capable of producing 18,000 tonnes of
crumb a year.
In a busy month, the factory takes in 150 tankers of fresh
milk to make 1300 tonnes of crumb.
Each tanker contains about 24,000 litres of fresh milk, from
farms throughout the South Island.
The plant also uses a small amount of powdered milk.
Cadbury's Claremont plant, in Hobart, also produces crumb and
Mr Callaghan said Cadbury would be looking at its Claremont
"I think it's more likely that Dunedin's crumb plant is where
we are going to start investing further again, to increase
the capacity of that equipment."
Mr Ellis said the Dunedin plant was more modern and had a
greater ability to produce more crumb in a quicker time, but
Cadbury "would aim" to balance the crumb operations between
the two plants.
In 2006, when there were concerns the Dunedin factory might
close, the Government invested $2 million in Cadbury on the
condition the company trebled the factory's chocolate crumb
production to its present level.
In 2007, the Dunedin City Council granted Cadbury a $218,000
rate relief grant over four years to help fund its $18
million investment in its crumb plant.
Of the Government investment, Mr Callaghan said it had been
"a terrific joint venture".
"I do owe them a debt. That was one of those factors that
helped me secure Dunedin."