The plant, in Dandenong South, will create 200 jobs in Victoria and follows last year’s purchase of Victorian dairy company Bead Foods. It adds over 3,000sq-m of wet processing and cool room facilities to Chobani’s existing Australian operation, effectively tripling production capacity to over 30,000 tonnes of yoghurt per year.
“We chose Australia as our first international market to launch Chobani because of its amazingly high-quality milk, and we knew that Australians are passionate about great-tasting food,” said Chobani founder Hamdi Ulukaya at the opening.
The factory has already created 50 new jobs in the past year, and a further 150 are expected to be added over the next three years. It is expected to become an export hub to grow the Chobani Greek Yoghurt and Gippsland Dairy brands into Asia.
Chobani, regarded as the most popular yoghurt in the United States, was founded in 2005 after Ulukaya purchased a closed-down Kraft plant there, and is now quickly expanding in the Australian market.
Peter Walsh MLA, Victoria’s agriculture minister said the Australian yoghurt and dairy desserts market was worth about one billion dollars annually and was one of the fastest growing domestic dairy product categories.