Fonterra is teaming up with New Zealand rugby team captain Richie McCaw as an ambassador to help build pride among New Zealanders for the dairy co-operative.

As part of a partnership agreement through to the end of 2015, Richie McCaw will support Fonterra’s community programmes and work with its staff and shareholders.

Announcing the partnership, Fonterra CEO Theo Spierings said the rugby legend’s shared values and ambitions for New Zealand made him a natural fit with Fonterra.

“We’re hugely excited to stand shoulder to shoulder with Richie and make some great things happen for New Zealand,” Mr Spierings said. “Richie shares our rural values of hard work and honest contribution.

“Fonterra is the envy of the dairy world and we want to build that image at home as well. It’s important that we stay connected to our grass roots and make a difference here, as well as globally.

“Thirty thousand New Zealand households earn their living directly from Fonterra and all Kiwis are better off because of our exports, but we know we still have a way to go in building stronger connections with communities in New Zealand and Richie can help us get there.”

“Our Milk for Schools pilot in Northland is an important step in the journey. Our partnership with Richie McCaw will help us tell our story and connect with New Zealanders on Milk for Schools and other initiatives.”

Richie McCaw said he was excited to be working with Fonterra.

“Fonterra is a great New Zealand company, doing terrific stuff out there in the world and bringing the returns back here, which is good news for all New Zealanders,” Richie said.

“Coming from a rural background, I can appreciate Fonterra’s co-op spirit, and the way they’re getting in behind the community with programmes like Milk for Schools, and other good ideas in the pipeline.”

“I’m happy to team up with Fonterra to make some great things happen for New Zealand,” he said.

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