Nestlé today announced it is helping China accelerate the development of its milk industry with the construction of a new dairy farming institute in Shuangcheng in Heilongjiang province.
The institute, with its series of training farms, aims to be the country’s leading dairy training center, offering teaching courses from national and international experts.
Dairy farm owners and workers from Shuangcheng and other Chinese regions will be able to improve their farm management skills and learn how to use the latest agricultural technology, Nestlé said. They will gain practical experience in expanding their farm businesses, improving productivity and sourcing high quality milk sustainably.
Local partners will be encouraged to help create an investment fund of 2.5 billion RMB for the project.
"We have worked with the local authorities and dairy farmers in Shuangcheng for more than 20 years," said Roland Decorvet, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Nestlé China. "Over that time we have helped to transform the area into one of the largest milk producing regions in the country.
"This new training institute is a continuation of our long-term investment in the future of Shuangcheng to ensure it remains one of China’s leading dairy districts," he added.
Nestlé has agreed to work with the Shuangcheng government to increase levels of training and technical assistance already provided to local farmers.
In partnership with the authorities, Nestlé has distributed 1,000 free milking machines to farmers to ensure no farmers in the region have to continue milking by hand.
Nestlé built a factory in Shuangcheng in 1987.
In its efforts to develop the rural area over the years, the company has also provided credit guarantees to those farmers with the potential to grow their businesses.
Nestlé’s work with farmers in Shuangcheng is part of what it calls ‘Creating Shared Value’, an approach to business that aims to create value for the company’s shareholders at the same time as for those communities where it operates.
Nestle is one of the world’s leading food companies. It headquarters are based in Vevey, Switzerland. The company employs around 280 000 people and has factories or operations in almost every country in the world.