INDONESIA – Yogyakarta-based producer of handmade cheese brand Mazaraat Artisanal Cheese, PT Mazaraat Lokanatura, plans to increase its output by building a new factory, and subsequently enter more Asia Pacific markets from 2023 to 2024.

According to Jamie Najmi, the second factory will be located near the first plant and both will be near the foot of Indonesia’s most active volcano, Mount Merapi, in Yogyakarta (Central Java island).

 The second factory, built by investments from Jakarta, is expected to process another 3,000 liters of milk, supplementing the first factory, which has a capacity of 1,000 liters.

The addition of milk capacity to 4000 liters will see PT Mazaraat Lokanatura Indonesia quadruple its cheese output, which currently lies at 100kg for 1000litres it processes daily.

With the increased output, the owner intends to distribute the cheeses to more countries in South East Asia, like Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam, and Cambodia, in 2023, and Japan and beyond by 2024.

The expansion plans into other markets by the Indonesian dairy come at a time when the global cheese market is projected by Fortune Business insight to grow from US$123.87 billion in 2021 to US$161.23 billion by 2028, at a CAGR of 3.84% in the forecast period, 2021-2028.

The progressive growth is due to the rising demand for assorted types of cheese in various food products and the increasing consumption of fast foods, such as pizza, pasta, and burgers, that are contributing to the growing demand for mozzarella, parmesan, and cheddar.

The emerging trend of healthy snacking and the rapidly evolving food service industry have led to a surge in the demand for snacks, including products in the retail sector, which is also driving the cheese market.

 Jamie, a New Zealand and France-certified cheese master, said: “We want to expand in South East Asia first and started with Singapore as our distribution hub in February 2022. From Singapore, we can enter other South East Asian nations by Q2 2023.

“The first factory will be converted into our research and development (R&D) site to develop more signature cheeses, while the second factory will be our production line and planned to commence operations in February 2023”.

Overall, the firm manufactures 18 SKUs in fresh and aged cheese, and creamery categories which are all certified halal by the Indonesian Islamic authority, the Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI).

The certification is a feat in itself because halal animal-based rennet is difficult to procure. The kid or calf has to be slaughtered according to Islamic principles, said Jamie.

Among its top sellers include perennial crowd-pleasers halloumi, mozzarella, and Colby Jack.

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