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Fonterra Colostrum and Stolle Sales Get a Boost from SARS

Fonterra's colostrum and Stolle milk sales have risen significantly in key Asian markets, as consumers turn to health-boosting products following the outbreak of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) earlier this year.

Stolle milk sales have risen 50% in the Taiwanese market, while Colostrum sales have increased considerably in the Chinese market.

Stolle milk and colostrum are two of Fonterra's specialty milk products. Stolle milk is obtained from cows which are immunised to induce the formation of antibodies in their milk. Liquid colostrum is taken from the first four milkings (48 hours) after calf birth from pasture fed, non-immunised cows.

Asian consumers believe use of these products can boost immune systems and prevent disease.

Patrick Geals, Fonterra General Manager of Health and Nutritional Solutions, says the SARS outbreak has boosted sales of colostrum well above forecasted levels.

"The unfortunate outbreak of the SARS virus has boosted Chinese market demand for Fonterra's colostrum product by over five times forecasted figures," says Geals.

Mr Geals says positive consumer perception of colostrum and Stolle is the main reason for increased sales.

"Chinese and Taiwanese consumers are drawn to natural remedies which they believe can thwart and cure diseases. They use colostrum and Stolle as preventative therapies," says Geals.

Colostrum is manufactured into colostrum powder at Fonterra's Hautapu plant. Fonterra currently has over 500 colostrum suppliers and will manufacture approximately 200 metric tonnes this season.

Stolle milk is manufactured into powder at Fonterra's Te Awamutu plant. Fonterra currently has 100 Stolle milk suppliers and will manufacture approximately 500 tonnes this season.

Patrick Geals is General Manager of Fonterra Health and Nutritional Solutions, which is part of Fonterra's new Growth Business unit. Health and Nutritional Solutions focuses on developing and commercialising novel bioactive dairy ingredient solutions for eight key health platforms: immune health, infant nutrition, gastrointestinal health, therapeutics, dermatology, bone health, sports health and animal health.

Revenues for the Health and Nutritional Solutions group will exceed $150 million this financial year

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