The Palaszczuk Government has today announced a support package of $25 million to Far Northern Milling Pty Ltd to assist in the establishment of an innovative bio-refinery that would help underpin the long-term future of Mossman sugar mill.
Minister for State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning Cameron Dick said the Government recognises the importance of Mossman Mill to the community and local economy and the substantial long-term benefits that would be derived from establishing a leading-edge bio-refinery on the site.
“Far Northern Milling intends to establish a biorefinery that will provide a viable future for the mill and long-term economic benefits to the community,” he said.
“If successful, this project will result in the development of a bio-refinery in the Far North which uses the latest in green chemical technology, which is another strong and progressive step forward for the state’s biofutures industry.
“This potential project will also diversify the Douglas Shire economy through the introduction of a considerable number of green chemical manufacturing jobs.
“Our government’s $25 million support package will materially benefit Far Northern Milling as they work towards finalising their business case, and, if successful, constructing the biorefinery,” he said.
“This package has been developed in consultation with the growers and is focused on securing the long-term viability of the industry.”
Mr Dick said the package includes $4 million to complete the necessary engineering studies for the biorefinery and provide executive support.
The Commonwealth Government recently announced $20 million in support for Far Northern Milling subject to an acceptable business case and additional financial support from the State Government.
Ms Maryann Salvetti, Chair of Far Northern Milling, said the support provided by the Queensland Government will be vital to helping Far Northern Milling realise their ambition to develop an innovative biorefinery, that will provide certainty to the Mossman Mill and the regions canegrowers.
“We would like to thank Minister Dick, Cynthia Lui and the Department of State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning for this support and their vote of confidence in our vision of creating a bio-future for our community,” she said.
“We now have a pathway forward to save Mossman Mill and the jobs it supports, which is great news for the Mossman sugar community.”
Member for Cook Cynthia Lui said the funding brings the opportunity to keep the mill running and build a biorefinery a step closer.
“The announcement of this $25 million support package for the Mill is the best Christmas present the Mossman sugar industry could wish for,” she said.
“I have been fighting to get certainty for the growers, and to get a clear pathway forward to build a sustainable future for the industry, and this announcement is a strong outcome.
“I want to thank the Premier and the Minister for supporting this project and Far Northern Milling and the Cane Growers for working with us to deliver this outcome.
“Now it is up to Warren Entsch and the Commonwealth Government to deliver on their promise – and release the $20 million they have committed to the ongoing operating costs of the mill.”
The biorefinery project strongly aligns with the government’s Advance Queensland Biofutures 10-year Roadmap and Action Plan.