Murray Goulburn co-operative shareholders voted in favour of the sale of the business to private Canadian company, Saputo today.
An overwhelming number of votes were cast in favour of the four main resolutions at a special meeting in Melbourne, although up to a million votes were lodged against some of the decisions.
A majority of votes in favour of the decisions had already been lodged as proxies for the meeting.
Farmer director Craig Dwyer made a heartfelt speech to the meeting and outlined the co-operative's long history in supplier hands.
"Today is understandably a momentous day in the 68 year history of the Murray Goulburn Cooperative," Mr Dwyer said.
"When seven dairy farmers from the Cobram area became the first subscribers to MG, each holding 100 shares on the 9th of January 1950, I am sure they never envisaged this day. The original investment by those visionaries saw MG grow to become one of the leaders in the Australian dairy industry and a cornerstone of dairy communities around the country.
"MG has meant many things to many people; suppliers and employees alike. It is not about who has supplied or worked for the Co-op for the longest, or who has the most shares.
"It is about the farms, the factories and the families. When my wife and I decided to begin our dairying career together, we actually rejected some share-farming opportunities as they were not MG farms, and therefore by default, not part of the MG family. The MG family encapsulated all... from the night shift operator, the tanker driver, the Field Service team, right up to senior management. Twice a year, any MG farmer had the opportunity to have the ear of the CEO at supplier meetings. To all those generations that preceded us to help build the MG we have all belonged to, I thank you.''