Backed by initial funds of 50 million renminbi (EUR7.3m), the Sodiaal business unit will concentrate on Greater Shanghai and Jiangsu and Zhejiang provinces by selling its products in dedicated shops developed with ZIB, independent retailers and internet platforms.
"This agreement allows us to enlarge the horizon where we can propose our products," Candia director-general, Giampaolo Schiratti, told Reuters.
With a 10% stake in the joint-venture, Candia hopes to help its parent company—France’s biggest dairy co-operative, with 13,200 members and sales of EUR5.4bn in 2014—to market over 40m litres of French milk annually.
The deal was signed in France by Chinese premier Li Keqiang at a time soon after European Union milk quotas were removed.
Schiratti said the Candia-ZJNAC deal would take time to develop amid a global slump in milk prices: "It will help in the long run but not solve [dairy’s] short-term crisis.”