UPDATE: MURRAY Goulburn may shrink its fleet of milk tankers, following a decision to axe 60 tanker drivers yesterday.
MG confirmed Wednesday it now has "approximately 150 drivers following these changes".
A spokesman for the milk processor said "as a result of the reduction in milk intake there will be a reduction in MG's fleet requirements and a reassessment in future fleet investment."
The move to axe the tanker drivers was a response to dwindling milk supply.
The jobs will be lost at Koroit, Leongatha, Maffra and Rochester. MG yesterday said in a statement a "number of support roles" would also be lost.
The co-operative said roster changes and voluntary redundancies would be offered "in the first instance".
"This is a continuation of efforts to address MG's cost base, improve efficiencies and ultimately increase earnings and the farmgate milk price," the co-operative said.
"These actions are regrettable but necessary to ensure a strong MG that can deliver sustainable and competitive returns for our suppliers."
The Victorian/Tasmanian branch of the Transport Workers Union is waiting on official confirmation of this decision from MG, including finer details in regards to what specific driving positions will be removed, what support roles might be impacted and when these losses will occur, a statement said.
The TWU said it represented "a larger percentage" of MG tanker drivers.
Victorian/Tasmanian TWU branch secretary John Berger said the union would work with the company to secure the best possible outcome for not only those members directly affected by this decision but all members across the Murray Goulburn group.
"The TWU will ensure these workers, some of whom have been with the union and the company for decades, are cared for appropriately and receive the best possible outcome from a very bad situation," he said.
Yesterday, New Zealand Funds Management Limited and New Zealand Funds Superannuation informed the Australian Securities Exchange that two of its trusts now held a combined 5.01 per cent of the MG Unit Trust.
- with ED GANNON
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