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History Of Milk

  • The birth of the Anchor Brand

    The birth of the Anchor Brand
    In 1886 Henry Reynolds – entrepreneurial Cornish farmer established a tiny factory in Pukekura, near Cambridge with the goal of making quality butter.
    Recognising the need for a 'marque' for his product, Reynolds is said to have chosen the Anchor from a tattoo on the arm of a former sailor who worked on a farm supplying his factory.
    First year production – 100lbs (45kg) of export butter – produced from the milk from 400 cows.
  • Anchor takes first prize l Establishment of Reynolds and Co.

    Anchor takes first prize l Establishment of Reynolds and Co.
    Anchor butter was exported to the Melbourne Exhibition where it won first prize.
  • Exports Expand

    Exports Expand
    The butter export trade developed rapidly with refrigerated transport on overseas steamers. Parchment paper was adopted and the old cumbersome, elaborate butter box was dispensed of, replaced by a plain white box nailed shut holding 56lbs of butter.
  • New Zealand Dairy Association

    New Zealand Dairy Association
    Reynolds business, which was now eight factories, was purchased by the New Zealand Dairy Association which also took over the Anchor brand for all of its dairy products in NZ.
  • UK Exposure

    UK Exposure
    Exporting to the UK, the front page of the Dairy Mail, February 16, 1911 displays an advertisement for New Zealand butter "made under ideal conditions from cattle grazed on the greatest pastures of the world".
  • NZ Cooperative Dairy Limited

    NZ Cooperative Dairy Limited
    By 1919 the NZ Dairy Association had amalgamated with other companies to form NZ Cooperative Dairy Limited – which adopted the anchor as its registered trademark.
  • The Choicest Butter

    The Choicest Butter
    Anchor is entrenched as the benchmark for butter and cheese in the UK market – which accounted for up to 90% of NZ's dairy exports. Butter was purchased in 1lb cartoons with the tag line – The Leading Brand of the Choicest Butter from the Loveliest Dairy Pastures in the World – and a free Anchor butter knife.
  • The Choicest Butter l - 2 -

    The Choicest Butter l  - 2 -
    Anchor butter was heavily promoted in 1921-1926 which lead to the firm establishment of the Anchor brand which in later years would become the biggest selling brand of butter in the UK.
  • The Anchor Club l - 1 -

    The Anchor Club l - 1 -
    In the early 1930s, due to the depression, butter was cheaper than margarine.
  • The Anchor Club l - 2 -

    The Anchor Club l - 2 -
    Anchor Club was introduced which issued a monthly magazine and gave membership badges to children who sent in the required number of wrappers. This was presided over by 'Uncle Anchor' who organised outings and sent birthday cards to members.
  • NZ Dairy Marketing Commision

    NZ Dairy Marketing Commision
    After the war, the New Zealand Dairy Products Marketing Commission was established. Towards the end of the decade, the factory was upgraded and capacity considerably increased.
  • The Anchor Club l - 3 -

    The Anchor Club l - 3 -
    With the outbreak of the war in 1939, all butter and cheeses were requisitioned by the Government and rationed in New Zealand to increase the supply of an anonymous brand to Britain. All branded produce was removed from the shelves in Britain until 1954.
  • A Famous Butter returns

    A Famous Butter returns
    Butter was de-rationed in 1954 and brand produce trading resumed, Anchor goes to market with its 'A Famous Butter Returns' campaign on bus and tram sides and in the local press with a new pack to quickly regain its leading position. 

The ingenuity of this pack was that it carried a consumer guarantee – which no competitor was yet bold enough to introduce. This guarantee offered a replacement packet "should you have reason to complain of this butter".
  • Anchor and Fernleaf l - 1 -

    Anchor and Fernleaf l - 1 -
    Fernleaf butter was the biggest selling NZ brand of butter, Anchor a close second with hundreds of new brands of New Zealand butter emanating from packing factories all over the UK. The concept of supermarkets arrived from America in the early 1960s. Commercial television encouraged consumers to try different brands which saw vigorous promotions by butter to stake their claim of the market.
  • Anchor and Fernleaf l - 2 -

    Anchor and Fernleaf l - 2 -
    Australia launches its national butter brand – Kangaroo. In the late 1960s, Anchor became the premier brand, slowly overtaking Fernleaf and commanding a premium price.
  • Export Restrictions

    Export Restrictions
    In 1972, Anchor launched 7.75oz packs with a £200,000 TV campaign. Anchor also introduced a strongly branded cheese pack. This was to be advertised alongside the famous butter pack and was a move towards stronger brand identification. For the first time, NZ was faced with restricted entry to a market. With the UK joining the E.E.C. NZ had to reduce exports down to 138,000t annually by 1978. The reduction was more severe for cheese, down to 15,000t (previous import of 64,000t).
  • Export Restrictions l - 2 -

    Export Restrictions l - 2 -
    This same year, the E.E.C. agreed on a special import arrangement for NZ to the UK.
  • Diversification l - 1 -

    Diversification l - 1 -
    Anchor aerosol cream was launched in 1982, taking the market by surprise and soaring to sales success. Anchor's diversification program could not have had a better start.
  • Diversification l - 2 -

    Diversification l - 2 -
    In 1983, 'Shake' – a milkshake drink was launched along with savoury butter packs – butter mixed with herbs and spices. These were closely followed by UHT pot creams.
  • Diversification l - 3 -

    Diversification l - 3 -
    By 1984, there were over 50 Anchor products.
  • Anchor Family Ads l - 1 -

    Anchor Family Ads l - 1 -
    From the late '80s through to the 1990s New Zealand watched a modern family stumble through life. The series of TVCs, which lasted 8 years, had a profound impact on NZ. It was different from any previous portrayals of the 'typical family' on TV; the mum and dad were separated and their daughter Sam was the main character in NZ's first full-blown soap-style ad campaign. The early TVCs were directed by Lee Tamahori and featured the entire Anchor range in everyday circumstances.
  • Diversification l - 4 -

    Diversification l - 4 -
    The centennial year for Anchor sees the first Dancing Cows commercials appear on TV. Saatchi's advertising agency has the cows singing, dancing and playing football to many different tunes, but all with the same message that Anchor cows eat green grass all year round, unlike dairy cows in other countries.
  • Anchor Family Ads l - 2 -

    Anchor Family Ads l - 2 -
    Anchor launched Anchor Spreadable, a butter that spread straight from the fridge.
  • Anchor Family Ads l - 3 -

    Anchor Family Ads l - 3 -
    People started to come back to butter in 1994, as consumer attitudes changed to health and convenience.
  • Anchor Family Ads l - 4 -

    Anchor Family Ads l - 4 -
    In the late 90's the 'Made of New Zealand' campaign was launched. This was a campaign to capture the essence of modern New Zealand life and the part that Anchor plays.
  • New Curvy Anchor Bottles

    New Curvy Anchor Bottles
    Anchor launched its new 'curvy' bottle with a handle designed for a comfortable grip and improved accurate pour.
  • The Dairy Industry Restructuring Act 2001

    The Dairy Industry Restructuring Act 2001
    The Dairy Industry Restructuring Act 2001 is passed, leading to the formation of Fonterra, New Zealand’s largest company.
  • Anchorville

    Anchorville was launched in the early 2000s and was an award-winning campaign that used cartoon characters and focused on health, taste and convenience. It featured fun and quirkiness to differentiate from the perception of milk as a commodity. In the late 2000s, the proven nutrition campaign was launched. This campaign featured real kids with their parents in conversation about their futures. The ads delivered family values and Anchor as a trusted nutritional expert.
  • The Freshest Taste

    The Freshest Taste
    Anchor launched its latest campaign "The Fastest is the Freshest, and the Freshest Tastes the Best". This campaign featured Anchor Milk workers all striving to achieve the best possible time to get the milk from farm to fridge, keeping the milk as fresh as possible.
  • Fonterra Renamed

    Fonterra Renamed
    Fonterra Research Centre renamed Fonterra Research & Development Centre.
  • Anchor launches zero lactose milk in New Zealand.

    Anchor launches zero lactose milk in New Zealand.
  • The Size Of The Industry

    The Size Of The Industry
    New Zealand’s milking cow population is now 4.8 million, and dairy farming is a major part of the New Zealand economy. While there has been a decline in cow numbers, milk quantities remain stable due to cow breeds being more efficient at converting grass into milk.
  • NZMP Low Lactose Instant Whole Milk Powder launched.

    NZMP Low Lactose Instant Whole Milk Powder launched.
  • Launched NZMP SureProtein Fast Milk Protein

    Launched NZMP SureProtein Fast Milk Protein
    Launched NZMP SureProtein Fast Milk Protein – a fast-digesting milk protein concentrate that quickly provides muscles with essential amino acids.
  • Valued Dairy Exports

    Valued Dairy Exports
    New Zealand dairy exports are valued at approximately NZ$16.667 billion. The top five dairy export products are whole milk powder, butter, cheese, infant formula and skim milk powder.