Opportunities in the South Burnett jobs market are flourishing with the opening of Swickers’ new $64 million processing facility, supported by the Palaszczuk Government’s $175 million Jobs and Regional Growth Fund.
Minister for State Development and Manufacturing Cameron Dick said the expanded Kingaroy operations have almost doubled the number of jobs onsite, growing from 570 before expansion to now more than 800 jobs.
“This Government will always support jobs and growth in regional Queensland,” Mr Dick said.
“In the wake of the devastating fire that ravaged the facility in late 2016, our government began working closely with Swickers.
“We didn’t just want to return the facility to full capacity, we wanted to support their expansion for the future and create more jobs for the people of Kingaroy and the South Burnett.
“What we see here today is one of the largest abattoirs in the Southern Hemisphere, which is a fantastic outcome for the company and the community.
“Swickers took the opportunity to not just rebuild the boning room but to invest in the transformation of the entire facility, incorporating state-of-the-art technology to improve efficiency.”
Minister for Agricultural Industry Development and Fisheries Mark Furner said the expansion project has more than doubled the processing capacity of Swickers Bacon Factory.
“As Queensland’s only export-accredited pork abattoir, the Swickers facility will stimulate long-term economic growth in the region and underpin the state’s pork industry for the next 30 years and beyond,” Mr Furner said.
“And with more than 800 staff now working at the Kingaroy facility, Swickers continues to be a vital employer for this part of our state.”
Sunpork Group CEO and Managing Director Dr Robert van Barneveld said that over the past 18 months Swickers has constructed the most advanced pork abattoir in Australia, and certainly one of the best in the world.
“Given the importance of this facility to the Australian pork industry, we decided to recognise the new processing floor commissioning with an open day for pork producers, wholesalers and our key retail customers,” Dr van Barneveld said.
“Many producers and wholesalers will rely on the efficiency and quality standards in our plant to maintain and develop their business well into the future.”
The $175 million Jobs and Regional Growth Fund will also support Sunpork’s next project – the further development of its piggery at Tong Park, pending a final investment decision by the company.