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$534,000 Federal Government grant for Bunge Meat Industries plant upgrade in Corowa.



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HON WARREN TRUSS MP MINISTER FOR AGRICULTURE, FISHERIES AND FORESTRY

AFFA01/19WT 13 February 2001

$534,000 FEDERAL GOVERNMENT GRANT FOR BUNGE MEAT INDUSTRIES PLANT UPGRADE IN COROWA

Australia's largest pork producer, Bunge Meat Industries (BMI), will receive $534,000 towards the refurbishment of refrigeration, slaughtering and boning room facilities at its plant in the southern NSW town of Corowa, Federal Agriculture Minister Warren Truss announced in Albury today.

Mr Truss said the funding is being made available under the Pigmeat Processing Grants Program (PPGP), a key part of the Coalition Government's $24 million assistance package for the Australian pork industry.

"The PPGP is designed to stimulate investment in new infrastructure, significantly enhancing the industry's ability to find new markets and maintain existing ones," Mr Truss said.

"BMI is Australia's largest pork producer, making up about 20 per cent of our entire national pork production.

"BMI has worked hard at developing and maintaining a strong export market for farmed Australian pork around the world and currently holds about 30 per cent of Australia’s pork export market.

"The $6 million refurbishment of the Corowa processing plant will enable BMI to boost its efficiency and increase production of boneless pork products for both the domestic and export markets.

Mr Truss paid tribute to Tim Fischer who successfully lobbied the Government for the grant.

Mr Truss said the project would allow BMI to improve its slaughtering capacity, significantly improve the recovery of offal and casings, upgrade its boning room facilities and improve refrigeration.

"It’s estimated this upgrade could result in BMI doubling its output," Mr Truss said.

"The project will also create significant job opportunities at the Corowa plant, as the extra demand will mean a second abattoir shift will need to be established. Flow-on job opportunities will be created in regional centres around the plant in southern NSW and northern Victoria.

"Funding of this project demonstrates the Coalition Government's ongoing commitment to assisting the Australian pork industry realise its full export potential, particularly in Australia's main markets of Japan and Singapore.

"It is also evidence of the Government's commitment to improving employment opportunities and infrastructure growth in rural and regional Australia."

Minister's office: Yvonne Best (02) 6277 7520 or 0418 415 772

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Last updated 13 February 2001

URL: http://www.affa.gov.au/ministers/truss/releases/00/0119wt.html Commonwealth of Australia 2000