7 Sep 2015

Farmers find 'range of uses' for free loans

9:07 am on 7 September 2015

Fonterra farmer shareholders are using interest-free loans for a range of purposes, including paying down debt, the co-operative says.

Fonterra plant in Takanini, South Auckland.

Fonterra plant in Takanini, South Auckland. Photo: RNZ / Diego Opatowski

More than 10 percent of Fonterra shareholders took up the interest-free loans in the first few days they were offered last week, and most are expected to take advantage of the credit line.

Fonterra Group director co-operative affairs Miles Hurrell said the strong uptake showed there was a need for the funding.

"Obviously some are paying down debt or using it to finance debt at the moment, but given this is an expensive time on farm with calving, we're seeing farmers use it for that.

"We also have the interest-free terms that we are offering through our farm source stores, which is also supporting our farmers through this tough time."

Fonterra was making a total of $430 million available for the interest-free loans.

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