NEW ZEALAND- New Zealand Riverland Foods Ltd, led by industry veterans Michael Dance and Tom Coughlan, former general managers at ZIWI, has announced the establishment of an exclusive pet food co-manufacturing facility in Canterbury. 

The company’s state-of-the-art factory in Hornby, scheduled to open in February, is ready to offer international clients in the canned pet food industry advanced co-manufacturing capabilities.

With an initial investment of US$20 million, New Zealand Riverland Foods aims to create an “ultra-modern” facility capable of producing a staggering 30 million pet food cans annually. 

The company anticipates additional investment as the plant develops, and discussions are already underway with potential clients in North America, Asia, and Australia.

Recognizing the potential in the local market, the company is open to collaborating with dog and cat food brands based in New Zealand, which currently operate in a US$500 million market. However, the company’s ambitions extend far beyond the domestic market. 

They acknowledge the global demand for pet food, which is estimated at US$104 billion and expected to reach US$163 billion by 2030.

There is a huge demand for access to modern manufacturing facilities that are both adaptable and innovative,” said Michael Dance, the general manager of New Zealand Riverland Foods Ltd. “We want to play an essential part in the health and longevity of pets and help put New Zealand firmly on the world pet food map.

New Zealand Riverland Foods distinguishes itself by not producing its brand, which allows for an unbiased approach to all clients. 

Dance emphasized, “All customers are treated equally. It also provides us with flexibility to meet the changing market demands, such as accommodating different product textures and formulations.

The Canterbury facility will have a wide range of capabilities, including the production of various pet food textures such as mousses, pates, and chunks-in-gravy styles, to cater to the preferences of both discerning cats and dogs. 

This strategic move positions New Zealand as a prime destination for third-party manufacturing on the global stage.

Tom Coughlan, the head of operations at New Zealand Riverland Foods Ltd, explained that the selection of Hornby, situated on the west side of Christchurch, was based on its proximity to processing plants and access to quality raw materials. 

These were identified as key factors in choosing the ideal location for the new facility. 

The company’s visionary approach and commitment to innovation signal a significant advancement in the pet food industry, solidifying New Zealand’s position as a hub for top-tier co-manufacturing services.

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