MR CHEW CHONG AT NAPIER HE IS INTERVIEWED. We take the following from the Napier Herald :— " Mr Chew Ohong, as his name indicates, is a Celestial by birth, and is at the present time a highly respected British sunject, who residence is at Eltham, in Taranaki, where liib energy has endowed his neighbors with wealth that has of late years been derived from the dairy industry through the medium of the two butter factories owned by him. Mr Chew Chong was in Napier the other day, and put up at the Masonic Hotel. In appearance he is an elderly man whoee countenance and figure affirm his race, whilst his manner and address are genial and straightforward. He thoroughly understands English, having been 45 years under the British flag in Singapore, Australia, and New Zealand. For the last 23 years he has been settled in New Plymouth, engaged in storekeeping. Our interview with him was directed to gaining his opinions and tho results of his experience on the subject of dairy factories, and upon an expression of our wish to publish the substance of the interview he promptly acquiescod in the proposal, and the followconversation ensued : — What number of butter factories are yon osvnor of ? — Two ; the one at Eltham, which is six miles from Stratford, and the other on Eltham road, about four inileß from the first. What is the output of butter ?— ln the summer months two tonß per week, and in the winter months something over one ton p?r week. I understand that yon were the first to start butter factories in Taranaki?— No My factory at Eltham was the second factory opened in the Taranaki province. I startei it about six years ago. What led «up to the enterprise ? —You see, I waß storekeeping, and always buying the settlers' butter, nearly two tons a week, and shipping it to England and Australia, and constantly losing money through bad butter. Hearing of factories elsewhere I made an offer to my customers t j find tho capital for a factory and erect it if they would agree to sell mo their milk. I knew nothing previously of the working of butter factories, but I found the capital and employod Europeans to make the butter. What number of cows do you think requisite to work a butter factory economically ?— 1 reckon to get the milk of 1000 cows for my two factories in ihe flush of the season. You see, you must employ two men, even if yon only have 200 cows, and tho labour or three men will do the factory work of 500 cows. Do you consider it desirable as a factory proprietor to have cows of your own ? —At first I cmli not get sufficient milk, and I agrood with certain families to provide cows and pay rent for land, and rateß and taxes, whilst they worked the farm, mi ked the cows, and delivered to the factory. We divided equally on the piice of tho milk valued nt per gallon and the proceeds of tho oalvoa sold at four months old. This arrangement continues to pay rue handsomely. What do you reokon the amount of money you get as the gross earnings of the produce of each oow ? I will say £6 per head, though List year owing to the exceptionally high price of calves I totalled £7 per head, What ient do you reckon land will pay at for dairying purposes ?— estimate that on our side it takes two acres to support a cow, and we pay 8s rent per acre, say 16 per cow, and at this rate, allowing for labor, taxes and outgoings, I reckon that the milk of each cow costs thirty-Gvo ahi.Uinga por annum, I havo not reckoned what is tho ntmoHt I could afford to pay, but theyo should be a large margin for contingencies. Aro you disposed to speculatoin the w*y of opening dairy factories in Hawko'a Buy '? No. I could not attend to thorn. It would be too far away. Are you inclinod to enlarge your interest in buttor factories ?— Hardly. At tho present time I more disposed to turn my atton^ion to cheese making, but my settlers have not been willing to sell mo all their milk. Next season I expect that there will not be so much demand for skim milk to feed calves, but, I intend to try to work cheese in my factories.
What power do you employ in your factories ? We have water power nt both places. What rate do you pay for insurance ?— Twenty shillings per cent. What do you consider a convenient working radius for milk suppliers to bring the milk in ?—Much depends upon the quality of your roads. With us I reckon four miles is far enough, but wo have no good metal for road making on our side. After discussing several minor details of machinery, &c, our interviewer thanked Mr Chew Chong end retired. | Taranaki Herald, Volume XLII, Issue 9702, 19 May 1893, Page 2