Our History

Milk matters to us

Since 1900, our dedicated farmers have been producing quality milk with a little help ‘from the girls’. Our range of quality dairy products have been enjoyed by Australian families for generations. We hope it’s enjoyed for many generations to come.

History menu: Select from the years below

The 1900’shistory-1900s

The Dairy Farmers Co-operative Milk Co. was formed on January 15, 1900. Sixty five stakeholders, many of them dairy farmers from the New South Wales Illawarra region, came together and agreed to run the new organisation on ‘true co-operative lines’. The Co-operative was formed with the purpose to help dairy farmers market their milk and butter directly to consumers in the city


Dairy Farmers were among the first to introduce milk in bottles, replacing the doorstep milk jug


history-1929Dairy Farmers started a long standing tradition by appearing at the Sydney Royal Easter Show.

1941 Free milk in schools was launched.


10 years later, over 500 metropolitan schools were being served by Dairy Farmers.

Dairy Farmers also supplied milk to war soldiers, and in 1942, the government declared Dairy Farmers a ‘protected undertaking’ to ensure continued supply of fresh dairy produce to soldiers and civilians alike.

1960’semphasis on innovation

Dairy Farmers emphasis on innovation continued:

  • Milk cartons were launched to help prolong the life of the milk.
  • Milk vending machines and unique Tetra Pak cartons helped make Dairy Farmers milk accessible as a refreshment on the go.


  • Australia’s first modified milk (low fat) was launched with the introduction of the Dairy Farmers ‘Hi-lo’ brand.
  • An ‘instant meal’ product called “Dairy Flip” (similar to Liquid Breakfast drinks) made with milk, eggs, sugar and spices was launched in Sydney and proved to be a huge success.


Dairy Farmers added Lite White to their range which became an instant success and continues to be enjoyed today.


Dairy Farmers moves beyond NSW borders – acquiring Victoria’s Midland Milk, Malanda Co-operative (FNQ), Queensco-Unity Dairyfoods Co-operative (SEQ), and Dairy Vale (SA).


  • A new logo was introduced signalling the stature of Dairy Farmers brand in the hearts and minds of Australian consumers.
  • New packaging launched to assist consumers find the right product for them on shelf.

Dairy Farmers logo and range gets a facelift to reflect the landscape and sunrise our Dairy Farmers see almost every day as they go about providing Australia with milk.


Dairy Farmers members overwhelmingly support the National Foods offer (owned by Kirin Holdings Company Limited since 2007) to acquire the Co-operative, with a change of ownership occurring on 27 November 2008.


Along with other Dairy and Drinks brands owned by National Foods, Dairy Farmers becomes part of the bigger Lion Nathan National Foods business as Kirin Holdings Company Limited assumes 100 per cent ownership of Lion Nathan.

Dairy Farmers logo and range gets a facelift to reflect the landscape and sunrise our Dairy Farmers see almost every day as they go about providing Australia with milk.


  • We still have a dedicated group of farmers who are a huge part of the Dairy Farmers brand.
  • Dairy Farmers is proud to continue our support of local events.
  • A diverse portfolio of products including newly re-launched permeate free milk range.
  • Dairy Farmers continue to be involved in the community through sponsorship of local festivals and shows.

Bega’s Better Farms Program

We’re still proud to support a dedicated group of Australian farmers who are integral to the Dairy Farmers brand. At Dairy Farmers, we’re passionate about giving back to our farmers, offering financial grants through Bega’s Better Farms Program to eligible dairy farmers*.

You can find out more at www.betterfarms.com.au

Dairy Farmers – ‘Here’s to good!’

*who have milk supply agreements with Bega Group or other Program participants.


get in touch

We'd love to hear from you!

SALES ENQUIRIES: (AU) 1800 000 570
EMAIL: consumersBDD@bega.com.au

  • PO BOX 23084,
    DOCKLANDS, VIC, 8012
  • 1800 677 852