Big River Milk’s cream rises to the top
WHEN an email from the Sydney Royal Cheese and Dairy Produce Show landed in Peter Watt's inbox with 2016 gold and bronze medal labelling material, he was chuffed.
It meant some of the products from his Southgate dairy operation had been recognised as being the cream of the crop by this year's judges.
But the Big River Milk director didn't realise just how successful his products had been in the show until he was sitting in The Daily Examiner's office less than half an hour later.
Checking what products the awards were for on his phone, Mr Watt was at first incredulous.
"Woah, hang on. That's unreal. We cleaned up," he remarked excitedly.
Big River Milk had in fact been awarded four medals at the show.
Taking out gold was their full cream non-homogenised milk, their homogenised full cream milk and their pure cream.
Big River's low fat milk offering skimmed in with a bronze medal.
"Last year at the Brisbane Dairy show we scored two silvers, a bronze and a gold, so it's actually a great result and an improvement," Mr Watt said.
"It really just confirms how good our milk is, and the fact that we can produce really good quality dairy in this area."
The director, who also runs Coffs Harbour-based company Local Farm Fresh, said it validated the amount of effort they had put into the business in the past six months.
"We've been working very hard on getting our staffing consistent, because maintaining the same levels of staff improves quality, improves output and gives stability to people.
"We've had our challenges over the last six months balancing it out but I think we've got a great team now and we're really starting to get results.
"It's very exciting. Now all we need is more local people to support us."
Fellow North Coast dairy brand NORCO also added another notch to its belt this week, after its Real Iced Chocolate was crowned Australia's Champion Flavoured Dairy Beverage in the Australian Grand Dairy Awards.
NORCO National Sales and Marketing Manager Mark Radford said it was a true testament to the dairy co-operative's passion for creating high quality products.
"We're very proud to be able to call ourselves the best when it comes to flavoured dairy beverages," Mr Radford said.