The birthday celebration of the century


In the heart of Northern Victoria a very special birthday has just been celebrated, with 300 of our people and farmers, their families and the local community coming together for our Stanhope factory’s centenary. 

A hundred years on, milk is still flowing through its veins and great tasting dairy still rolls off the line, and what better way to mark the occasion than by hosting a Community Day and opening our factory doors for people to take a look inside

Stanhope, known as the Town of the Tastiest Cheese, and as the home of Perfect Italiano, turns our local farmers’ milk into cheese which is sent across Australia and around the world. 

As well as factory tours, guests enjoyed face painting, a petting zoo, pony rides, live music, and cow painting, while tucking into pizza made by Angelo’s Pizza and Pasta using our very own Perfect Italiano mozzarella.

A historical display looking back at a hundred years of dairy manufacturing took the community on a trip down memory lane, while a time capsule to commemorate the event was buried on site until 2071. 

Fonterra Stanhope Site Manager – North, Steve Taylor, said he couldn’t have asked for a better day to celebrate an icon of Stanhope.

“It’s a real privilege to be the site manager at this point of Stanhope factory’s history. There are many who came before me and there will be many more to come.

“At Fonterra, we often talk about mastery when it comes to our dairy foods – it is something that only comes with time. It has taken decades to create the mastery we have at the factory today, and it’s something we’re really proud of.”

Fonterra Australia Managing Director, René Dedoncker, says it was fantastic seeing so many people turn out.

“People have been enjoying great-tasting dairy foods from Stanhope for over a century, and the day was all about celebrating the people, the stories, and the memories made.

“While much has changed over the years, there are a lot of things that have remained the same.

“From the high-quality milk produced by our local farming families – some of whom have supplied the factory since it started – to our peoples’ expert craft to turn this milk into our world-class cheese, right through to the community which has stood by the site every step of the way,” says René. 

Federal MP for Nicholls Sam Birrell was amongst those enjoying the festivities and said it’s amazing to think that the Stanhope factory has been making high-quality dairy for over a hundred years.

“When people all around Australia and the world sit down to eat a pizza or pasta, there’s a good chance that the cheese has come from places like Fonterra’s Stanhope factory.

“This is something that should create a sense of pride in the region,” says Sam Birrell.