Our implementation of innovations increased capacity and reduced production time.

Edendale, Southland

The project

Fonterra’s Edendale site on State Highway 1 northeast of Invercargill is one of the company’s largest and features a 28 tonne per hour milk powder drier.

Edendale is New Zealand’s oldest manufacturing site still in operation and Babbage was commissioned to manage the full scope of the site’s expansion. 

We project managed the construction of the whole milk powder drier, a new boiler and all associated site process services, including waste water treatment and disposal requirements. 

We utilised the latest technology from suppliers and as a result the Edendale drier is now capable of processing 100 litres of milk per second or producing 28 tonnes of milk powder per hour. The drier has increased Fonterra’s production capacity for milk powder by more than 10 per cent.

Formal risk management, quality assurance and design review processes were implemented throughout the project. Labour and operational costs were assessed against capital costs in detail, and safety management systems were developed after these were identified as key within Fonterra’s brief.

Stakeholder engagement and innovation

A formal stakeholder engagement programme was initiated and led by Babbage and resulted in a plan of immense value to the project and to all those involved. 

Our experience in implementing stakeholder plans for the benefit of all participants stems from completion of two previous drier projects at Fonterra’s Edendale site managed by Babbage.

All innovations available for consideration were reviewed at the commencement of the project and those implemented have resulted in the lowest cost per tonne of product in terms of capital and energy usage. 

Overall, the Edendale drier project was completed on time and well within budget.

Key details


Edendale drier
Fonterra Co-Operative Group
Edendale, Southland
$212 million
September 2009
Dairy (primary industry)

Project team

Project manager
Grant O'Connor