Dairy export figures for the past 20 years illustrate the growth of the industry and the phenomenal rise of China as a market for dairy products.
Statistics New Zealand has released the figures which track dairy exports from 1992 to 2012.
The national dairy herd has risen from 3.5 million cows in 1992 to 6.4 million last year.
Prices manager for Statistics New Zealand Chris Pike says the volume and value of dairy exports have risen over the 20 years too.
He says the market destinations for our dairy exports have changed dramatically too.
Chris Pike says in 1992 New Zealand sent $12 million worth of dairy goods to China.
By 2012, that had surged to $2.6 billion.