CANTERBURY CENTRAL DAIRY COMPANY.
ANNUAL MEETING OF SHAREHOLDERS.
The twenty-first annual meeting of i shareholders cf the Canterbury Central Co-operative I>airy Company was held yesterday. Mr John Barnett, chairman of directors, presiding over a good attendance. DIRECTORS' REPORT. The directors' report was read as follows: — "Contrary to tho gcn«Tal expected belie!, prices on tiio English niaric-et were not mairii tallied during last season, but against this it is gratifying to record an incrcape in the butter manufactured by the Company, the increase being 2015,0c(kb, as compared with the previous year. '£he profit and loss account shov.-s a surplus of £71C0 Is lid, inI eluding £1137 Hβ 5J brought, forward from I l:>?t year, which, your directors recommend ! should be dealt with as follows:—To pay the j usual 6 per cent, dividend, £785; to writo off buildings and machinery at creameries, i £1013; to write off buildings and machinery [at factory, £37-2; to pay a bcnio to suppliers of halfpenny per pound -on butter-fat eupplicd during the year, £113-1; to pay the usual 5 pt-r cent, bonus on .wages and salaries, £10v2; tha balance to l>e carried forward next year. All bonuses unclaimed on ! tho'3let of (March, 1914, will be deemed forfeited to tte Company. The total milk I euppb' received for the year was 50,077,2251b. Tho total cream supply received for the year wa3 791,075ib. The* average price paid to suppliers has been II.SGd, end with tho probonus of id per pound, will make the price 12.30 d for the year, which must be considered a very satisfactory icturn. The butter manufactured was 2,423,4111b, or 1081.57 tons, an increase of 92 tons on the previous year. Tho export shipments amounted to 2-10 tons, the balanoe (741 tons) being required for local consumption. The quantity of milk taken to make one pound of butter wae 23.5. Your directors arc pleased to report that the soft cheese business shows a profit for the twelve months' working, and although at present only small, they hope for an extension of this business during the.coining year. Present indications for the coming season are for a good eupply, and fair prices may be looked for." CHAIRMAN'S AT>DRESS. Regarding tho report and balancesheet, tho chairman said it was not necessary to say much. The company's factory was oho of the most up-to-date in New Zealand. Ho hoped tnat after going through the factory and seeing the way in which it was carried on and cared for, they would appreciate it. defend it, and assist it iv every possibleway. Referring to the production of buttor, tho chairman stated that the butter mado during the week ended October 14th, 1912, was 52,81G1b, and during tho corresponding week of tiiis year 61,8721b, an incrcaso per day of 12*,993 5-7 th pounds. Tho total output of butter for tho past season was 1081 tons, a record in the history of the comnany. The cash receints in 1911----12 had been £124,427, and" in 1912-13. £120.948, an increaso of £6521. The total amount paid to the suppliers during the twelve, months was £104,356. At tho last three shows the company had mado nine entries, securing sevon first prizes and one second, and had tied for second place in , the Championship of New Zealand. Referring to casein, tho chairman said it had been hoped that they would have been able to pay a higher price if they could safely go in for its manufacture. Tho directors had given tho matter a lot of consideration, but had decided that it would bo unwise to spend £6000 to £7000, as there was not sufficient guarantee that there would not be overproduction, and a consequent reduction in prices. It was of tho greatest importance to keep up tho quality of the butter. If from any cause the quality should go down, prices must go down, and the industry go down,, and tho result would be disastrous to the country. Hβ would urge every supplier to assist the company by not sending bad milk or cream to the factory. Many were doing their best, but ho regretted to say that some wero not. During tho year a 10-ton freezer had been put in, as there was a risk of serious loss in the event of accident to the old machine. The creamery at Kaituna had been closed owing to the growth of home separation, and tho building had been removed to Church Bush, where it was believed it would bo profitable. If the growth of home separation continued, in a few years it would'not pay to run creameries. Tho result would be the closing of creameries, and all milk would be dealt with by home separators. He feared the result, and the matter was one for suppliers to,think about. The drop in the price of butter had meant a loss 'of £2000, and two shipments had realised less-than had been paid' to suppliers. The company's agent at Home had mado splendid reports on the butter' forwarded, and had stated that ho would be pleased to handle any quantity of butter of the same quality. In moving the reception of the report and balance-sheet, the chairman invited discussion. GENERAL DISCUSSION. - In reply to one shareholder, who asked what loss would result to tho company if the creameries were closed and home separators used, the chairman said that the buildings would be dead property, and tho company would have to pay interest on the Capital sunk in them. A shareholder _ said that if more information was given to country peoplo regarding tho affairs of the company, they would be a great deal better satisfied. Regarding the Government charge for freezing and storage of butter of, £790, he asked whether it would not be better to enlarge tho freezing capacity of the company's own factory. Mr Evans said he hoped the company would go in for the sterilisation of milk. They must keep up with the times, and try to meet the home separator man in every possible way. The manager explained that all cream and milk dealt with was pasteurised •before it was mado into butter. A shareholder said that a question of great importance was.why Danish butter commanded a higher price than New Zealand butter. Some discussion ensued, and it was stated that one reason was that Danish butter cpuld be placed on tho London market in pno week, as against six weeks in the case of New Zealand A shareholder said that Danish could not bo compared with New Zealand butter for quality, but there was something wrong with tho system of distribution and sale in London. The report and balance-sheet were adopted. The retiring directors were re-elected, and Messrs 11 Hill Fisher and Sons wero re-appointed auditors. The meeting concluded with votes'of thanks to tho directors and tho staff, a bonus of £50 being voted to tho chairman for his long and valuable services. An inspection of the factory was then made by tlic shareholders.
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