WA milk a hit in China

Rueben HaleCountryman

WAFarmers Milk has hit the supermarket shelves in China.

The historic trial shipment is the first time West Australian fresh milk has been successfully exported and sold in northern China.

The milk, produced by Harvey Fresh under a brand licence between WAFarmers and WA food products exporter Lifeland, was air-freighted from Perth last Thursday to China, where it has been retailing at two large department stores in the northern port city of Dalian just days after.

Lifeland managing director Mr Sha Yi said the milk journey from the WA dairy farm to the the Chinese retail consumer was very complicated.

Get in front of tomorrow's news for FREE

Journalism for the curious Australian across politics, business, culture and opinion.


“We use China Certification and Inspection Corp Australia, who are entrusted by the Chinese government, to do a pre-shipment check of the milk before it is despatched from Harvey Fresh for export,” he said.

“An inspection team based in Perth check the processing and take samples, which are sent to the laboratory the same day.”

“The following day the milk is put in a chill room at Perth airport before it is checked prior to it being sent to China on Monday in a specially designed chilled Airway container.”

“The milk then arrives at Shenyang Airport on Tuesday morning and is received by our Dalian warehouse the same day. The product arrives at the department store just five days after it is received by Harvey Fresh from South West farms.

Mr Yi said interest in WA fresh milk by the Chinese consumer was exceeding his forecasts and he now expected demand for WAFarmers milk to escalate quickly.

“We have started our business retailing the milk at Sungiven Foods and Friendship Department store, which are both based in Dalian,” he said.

“Sungiven has increased their next order quantity significantly.”

“They have five stores in Dalian city and they will expand to six stores by the end of the year. All products in this chain store are premium products, with their clientele more focused on quality than price.”

He said customers at Friendship Department store had agreed the WAFarmers milk was the best fresh milk available in the store.

“Every customer who tasted our milk recognised our milk is true fresh and premium milk,” he said.

“Friendship is a traditional premium department store and has a very good reputation. Chinese consumers seeing the WAFarmers milk brand for sale at this type of store will add further prestige to the brand.”

Get the latest news from thewest.com.au in your inbox.

Sign up for our emails