Dairy farm growth spurs large, new store

HANNAH MCLEOD
Last updated 05:00 21/07/2014

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A $1.5 million investment in Northern Southland is now open to the public.

Farmlands regional manager for Southland Harry Soper said the co-operative, which merged with CRT in 2013, decided to build a new store in Mossburn after massive growth in Northern Southland.

The new shop was officially opened this week, and was about four times the size of the previous location, he said.

"Most obviously we've seen a big land use change [in Northern Southland]."

While there were still a lot of traditional sheep and beef farmers in the area, there had been a large move to wintering and grazing for dairy farming, as well as more dairy conversions, he said.

The co-operative sold its existing store and spent more than two years working on the project.

"I think it's the biggest thing to hit Mossburn in a long time."

The store will service a massive geographical area, with the closest Farmlands stores being in Otautau or Winton.

The bigger store also called for more staff, with Farmlands hiring an extra on-farm technical field adviser and retail staff member, bringing the total to five.

Soper said he understood the old shop's new owner intended to convert it to a cafe.

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