Tag Archives: NSW meat processing


Located 200km east of Sydney, Privately owned facility that was shut for a period due to a business deal. Re-opened in 2014 targeting Asian market preferences in Sydney.

Other Names

  • Unknown

Current Operation

  • Is currently operating in 2014.


  • Oberon is approximately 200km east of Sydney, on the western side of the Great dividing range.


Oberon #2Hema Maps – Australia Truckies atlas.


  • Privately owned.2
    • Manager Andrew McLeod.2






  • February. Abattoir re-started2
  • Had been closed for last 2 1/2 years due to sour business deal2
  • Will fill demand for Asian style processing of smaller stock2
    • processing goats, lambs, deer and beef2
    • Chinese prefer a skin-on burnt2
      • Processed through a hot tub, hair is beaten off and skin stays on, then hair is burnt off and gives a crisp golden colour2
      • large market demand in Sydney2
  • Currently employing 16 people2
    • intentions to employ up to 402



  1. Abattoir industry in a disastrous state. ABC rural. 16.02.2010
  2. ‘Oberon abattoir back in operation’ ABC rural. 24.02.14


Other Names

Current Operation


  • Guyra is located 35km North of Armidale in NSW. Armidale is approximately 460 km North of Sydney

Australia. Guyra

GuyraHema Maps – Australia Truckies atlas.


  • DR Johnston Group Pty Limitied1
    • Other articles say DA Johnston Pty Limited4
  • Australian Meat Holdings4




  • NSW government closed all government owned small slaughterhouse facilities that didn’t meet hygiene and inspections standards.3


  • NSW Government built Guyra abattoir as a central facility for the areas meat processing needs3
    • Operated as New England Abattoir Council4
    • Finance was entirely from loan funds $1.83M3
    • abattoir didn’t trade in meat on its own behalf but service kill – cattle, sheep, pigs3


  • Estimated cost of processing one head of cattle is equivalent to 8.3 sheep or lambs or 6.9 pigs.3

1977 – 1981

  • Meat and Live-stock Corporation estimate that between 1977-19813
    • Cattle capacity utlisation declined from 84% to 60% nationally3
    • Declined cattle capacity utilisation in NSW alone 92% to 58%3
    • Sheep capacity declined from 83% to 66% nationally3
    • Declined sheep capacity utilisation in NSW alone 86% to 77%3
    • Between 1977 – mid 1981 22 abattoirs ceased operations.3


  • Following several months unprofitable operations the abattoir was ‘mothballed’3
    • mothballed is term used to keep maintenance and requirements on repairs on facility up to date but not actually processing any animals.
  • Ceased trading in February due to drought4
  • 150 people lost jobs caused Guyra unemployment to go from 0% to 13.3% by July4


  • Guyra unemployment by March 27.4% – highest unemployment figure for a NSW country town4


  • State government waived about $6M of the debt accumulated (Total debt was nearly $7M at the time of sale) – on condition that licence to slaughter was surrendered.3
  • Abattoir was sold to new owners for $0.8M3
  • Purchased by AMH, abattoir was export registered at the time (Pg 126)
  • Private ownership – abattoir reopened – again as a service facility3
  • March – Abattoir re-opened DA Johnston Pty Limited4


  • Previous 3 years – plant had substantial investment of capital (Pg 126)
  • AMH approached their banker – Hong Kong Banking Corporation for a partner (Pg 126)
  • AMH entered into 50/50 partnership with DR Johnston to operate the abattoir (Pg 126)
    • DR Johnston were a trading house that ran grain, stockfeed, protein meals & fishmeal, aswel as 5 different meat trading businesses


  • Note – Article cites that Guyra came to AMH in 1991 from ConAgra (Pg 130)


  • abattoir closed for its annual Christmas close-down1


  • workers meant to resume work in January but unavailability of stock led to period extension 1 week.1
  • February. 25th – further shortage of stock and a close-down for six weeks until re-opening 14th April 19941
    • Employees remained on the books but didn’t receive pay.1
    • Some workers seeked employment elsewhere while abattoir closed1
  • June. 9th 220 people stood down1
    • accepted that period of this closure – 17 weeks between June 94 and October 94 was a seasonal closure in respect of the meat industry arising out of a shortage of stock1
  • October. 10th. plant reopened but on a reduced scale slaughtering beef1
    • Half of dismissed employees offered re-employment1
      • 27 didn’t accept1
  • AMH frustrated by what it saw as unproductive and inefficent industrial practices, began a process to change the working arrangements in its plants (Pg 128)
    • Restricted production to minium tally and temporily closed some plants – Guyra was the 1st (Pg 128)
    • AMH said to have budgeted $30M to ‘break’ the unions, by 1996 the estimated cost was $70M (Pg 126)


  • Guyra abattoir taken to Industrial relations commission of NSW by AMIEU1
    • dispute over severence pay and entitlements to people who didn’t take up employment when plant reopened. October 19941
  • House prices in Guyra dropped $15,000 day of abattoir closure, some brick homes were being sold for under $30,0009


  • Guyra as considered a marginal operation, it was closed.(Pg 126)
    • Killed only 21,427 for the year. Never worked again after this (Pg 130)
  • Australian Meat holdings now owned Guyra4
    • AMH controlled by big US rural commodities trader – ConAgra, a major exporter from North America10
    • AMH accounts for 16.5% of Australia’s beef kill.10
    • currently owns another 8 facilities but will be consolidating to 5 and closing Beaudesert (QLD), Guyra and Portland (Vic)4
      • others owned Dinmore, Townsville, Rockhampton and Aberdeen10
          • Author note – not sure of 8th.
      • Intended that 300 jobs would be replaced at Dinmore when expansion completed there10
    • AMH intend to invest in larger more efficent plant – Aberdeen abattoir (NSW)
      • Aberdeen closed in 1999 – reasons cited as stock shortages5
        • AMH closed Aberdeen to send all cattle to Dinmore abattoir (QLD) – Even with added cost of cartage costs of processing were still $14 per head/cattle cheaper processed in QLD than NSW6
  • Guyra – Early in 1996 enterprise agreement was reached – first of its kind in Australia4
    • strenuously opposed by AMIEU and employees from other abattoirs4
    • Guyra employees entered agreement to protect jobs and allow abattoir to be viable4
  • AMH had fought intense battles with meat industry unions to introduce workplace agreements warning that AMH “..had long warned the Australian meat processing industry needed to significantly increase it’s international competitiveness”  Kieth Lawson AMH CEO.10
  • Up to half the states (NSW) 56 abattoirs could close with the loss of up to 5,000 jobs in country NSW due to industry rationalisation.2
    • outdated and inefficent abattoirs could follow Guyra2
    • Industry observers say beef export abattoirs – Wingham, Mudgee, Gunnedah and possibly Inverell are most at risk2
    • Administrators had been appointed at Blayney abattoir (NSW)2
      • Blayney closed 1998 – stock shortages cited but observers say economic factors7
    • Newer and efficent plants expected to survive – Young, Gundagai, Calcairn, Cootamundra and Harden2
    • Others that had recent capital investment should survive – Goulburn, Dubbo2
      • these had provided benchmark for state beef processing of efficency gains necessary2
      • Niche market suppliers would likely survive – Casino abattoir (QLD). Lismore2
    • Industries fundamental problem – lack of plant investment due to price wars2
    • USA had taken Australian market share Japan, Korea and Taiwan2
      • Cattle prices had slumped in the last six months (First half of 1996)
    • Live export was sending 500,000 cattle to Indonesia and Philippines2
    • Gunnedah abattoir was receiving stamp duty concessions that no other plants were getting.2


  • Guyra abattoir site being developed for rabbit farming enterprise8


  1. DR Johnston Group Pty Ltd (Guyra abattoir) and W Archer & 219 Ors (1995) NSWIRComm 172 (31st August 1995)
  2. ‘5000 jobs at risk: abattoirs facing closure SMH 21.05.1996. www.abattoirs.com.au
  3. ‘Short run costs and throughput variability of a NSW abattoir’ Piggott, Small 1987
  4. ‘Guyra abattoir closure’ Mr Raymond Chappell 15.05.96 http://www.parliment.nsw.gov
  5. http://www.parliament.nsw.gov.au/prod/parlment/hansart.nsf/V3Key/LA20020314031
  6. ‘State rules shut abattoir’ The Land 06.07.00
  7. ‘600 sacked workers given just a weeks pay’ Sydney morning herald. 10.03.1998. http://www.abattoirs.com.au
  8. ‘Guyra man killed in forklift accident on abattoir site’ Northern daily. 07.06.2011.
  9. ‘Guyra’s comeback faces further hurdles’ Landline 12.10.2003
  10. ‘US Beef exporters force three abattoirs to close’ SMH 15.05.1996


Camperdown abattoir was located close to Sydney and closed in 1991 following violent industrial confrontations over pay and conditions.

Other Names

Current Operation

  • Closed 19911


  • 8km SE Sydney CBD


Hema Maps – Australia Truckies atlas.


  • Famicopr – Farouk Fami1




  • May. Fired 130 workers2
  • Oct. Mounted police charged meatworkers picketing abattoir 26th October 19912
    • Body Hire firm – ‘Troubleshooters Available’ assis abattoir to find contract labour2
    • Camperdown 1st abattoir to be staffed by contract labour2
  • Violent protests between unions against police and contractors over pay conditions and pay.1
  • Mangement decided to employ contract workers, never reached an agreement with unions, abattoir closed.1
  • Bitter and violent industrial confrontation forced plant’s closure1
  • Troubles arise from attempts by some exporters to cut  meatworkers wages and conditions” Bill Malcolm – Senior lecturer in Agricultural economics at Melbourne University
  • Several closures in Victoria abattoirs as a result of shortage of livestock
  • QLD meat industry seen as having advantage over Vic-
    • QLD – increasingly lot fed animals receving higher export prices, ability to export quicker to Japan2
    • Vic – grass fed animals,
      • Extracting difference in profit margins from meatworkers2


  • Poperty is carved into 6 lots and beng advertised for total price of $800,000 (dated 10.12.2007)1
    • old abattoir site nearly 10ha for sale for $230,0001
    • Is an abandoned site, in shocking repair, has asbestos1
    • Shire council asked management to clean up site1


  1. ‘Derelict abattoir for sale’ The Standard. 10.12.2007
  2. ‘Mounted Police attack abattoir pcikets’ Green left weekly. 30.10.1991

Casino. #239. NSW

Casino is more commonly known as the Northern Co-operative Meat Company

Casino is an Export accredited facility processing beef and offal. It is the only Co-operative owned meat business in Australia.

Other Names

  • Northern Co-operative Meat Company


Current Operation

  • Aus-meat registration #02394.
    • Aus-meat listing accessed 02/10/2017
    • Export accredited facility
  • Casino is the only producer Co-operative owned meat processing business in Australia16
  • NCMC also operate a pig processing operation at Booyong20

Source http://ncmc-co.com.au/. Accessed 28.08.2017


Australia. Casino


Hema Maps – Australia Truckies atlas.


  • Northern co-operative meat company – Only farmer co-operative owned beef abattoir in Australia1
    • Chief Executive Simon Stahl1


  • Service kill to customers involving up to 20 operators1
  • Specialised Wagyu processing plant – six regular kill customers provide 10% weekly beef throughput – 4000 head1
  • Direct incentive program offered to co-op members – paid $450,000 in incentive payments 80,000 slaughtered head.1
  • Membership is about 1500 members, both cattle and pork, including 1350 as ‘active’1
  • Members not required to gaurantee of livestock supply and competes with other processors3
  • Operates two floors – Capacity 12,500 a week, Beef floor over 150kg, veal floor under 150kg3
  • As a Cooperative is required to publicly disclose its end-of-year results unlike most other meat processors1
  • Also own Pig processing plant – Booyong, Casino Hide traders.3

Source Beef Central 05.11.2014. Logo

Source Beef Central 08.06.2017



  • Northern Co-Operative Meat Co is established as a farmer owner processing business16
    • Service export and domestic beef and pork markets16

1933 – 1939

  • Founders for the first 6 years processed cattle in their own right36


  • Casino Hide Tanners is established16
    • One of the first tanneries in Australia dedicated to the tanning of cattle hides for export16


  • South Burnett meatworks at Murgon close.27
    • Leaves Casino as the only producer owned processing co operative remaining in operation in Australia27


  • 2009/2010 financial year after tax profit $1.025M3


  • March. Northern Co-operative say jobs will go if the Richmond Valley Council goes ahead with planned changes to its water charges14
  • May. Questions asked in legislative council in regards to general information of abattoirs in operation in NSW at the time that employ 50 full time equivalent staff or more.12
    • Casino Northern co-Operative Meat Co Ltd is included in list.12
      • Licensee –  Fung Lea Food Pty Ltd12
  • 2010/2011 financial year after tax loss $1.03M – impacted by climate conditions on cattle availability3
    • Start of 2011 was extremely wet19
    • High Australian dollar19
      • Escalated 26c19
    • Climate conditions had placed significant pressure on business in the January to March Period19
      • Peak production period is normally January to June19
    • Meat processing industry profitability isn’t constant19
      • Fixed costs are very high19
      • Lack of stock can create significant challenges19
        • Supplies predominantly come from independent parties for service kills19
        • When trading conditions become difficult they slow their production particularly when competition or prices of livestock increases19
  • Current CEO at this time is Gary Burridge19
    • Intends to stand down in April 2012
    • Mr Burridge had worked 18 years in this one position19
      • Will move to a new position with T & R Pastoral group20.
      • Will continue to hold Chairman position with Australian Meat Industry Council.20
  • Casino Co-op is currently owned by 1650 members who are predominantly cattle and pig producers19
    • No guarantee of livestock numbers from members19
    • Facility competes with other processors for throughput19
  • NSW Adult Cattle Slaughter throughput – www.mla.com.au
    • Statistics only for the State of NSW financial years.
    • Comparing monthly slaughter for entire state of NSW.


  • Jan.Northern Coopertive Meat co takes on controlling interest in Ramsey meats business3
  • Acquired Ramsey Meats business (Grafton) and now closed.1
    • Ramsey – located Grafton closed operations 14.11.10, shifting business to Casino2
    • Legal representative – Move from Grafton regretted and not the companies preferred option, it appeared inevitable certain Government departments were “single minded in their efforts to achieve the closing of the abattoir business”2
    • Ramsey meats were heavily focused on veal production and had been shifted a service kill arrangement to NCMC since its closure20
  • February. New CEO is appointed. Simon Stahl21
  • Currently operates from Nippon Meat Packers Australia head office in Sydney21
    • Manager of innovation and regulatory oversight21
    • Joined Nippon in 1992, initially working at Oakey (QLD)21
    • Spent 7 (1995 – 2012) years as managing director at Nippons Mackay (QLD) plant21
  • June. 2011 / 2012 Financial year Profit $826,00022
  • Additional plant throughput (due to Ramsey Meat acquisition) had helped trading.22
    • Veal numbers up 73% on previous year22
      • Utilisation operating at 40% capacity in 10/11 now operating at 95%22
    • Beef throughput up 3% on previous year22
      • Beef floor currently operating at 100% capacity22
        • Yearly cycle is 90%22
  • Specialised Wagyu processing  a significant part of the Casino business22
  • Direct consignment incentive to co-op members on 80,000 head was $318,00022
    • Incentive is paid to co-op members by a custom kill operator committed to processing at Casino22
    • Currently 1550 members22
  • NSW Adult Cattle Slaughter throughput – www.mla.com.au
    • Statistics only for the State of NSW financial years.
    • Comparing monthly slaughter for entire state of NSW.

  • Casino is hopeful of being re-listed to supply Russia
    • Plant with 6 others was de-listed earlier in the year.
  • May. NSW unveils regulations to ensure wellbeing and welfare of animals.13
    • Regulations require a designated Animal Welfare Officer (AWO) to oversee and be accountable for the welfare of animals processed at each abattoir facility.
    • AWO’s will undergo specific training that will make them eligible for the position only if that training is completed.
    • All domestic abattoirs in NSW will be required to also have an AWO by 01/01/2013
  • June to December – processing period hard.1


  • Jan – June.  – shift in momentum of processing numbers due to drought.1
  • Hitting weekly records and working extra shift1
  • Not so much extra animals due to drought but abundance due to supply from Northern properties, larger Southeast QLD processors  didn’t have to come south to source kill supply1
  • Plants beef throughput up 7%, to end of financial year veal floor utilisation up to 85%, beef floor – currently 100%, yearly cycle 90%1
  • NSW Adult Cattle Slaughter throughput – www.mla.com.au
    • Statistics only for the State of NSW financial years.
    • Comparing monthly slaughter for entire state of NSW.


  • August. Licence agreement is obtained to allow the Casino plant to process PCAS (Pasturefed Cattle Assurance System) on behalf of it’s customers-operators23
  • NCMC record a before tax profit $3.9M for the 2013 /2013 financial year.24
    • Driven by sharp rise in throughput in Jan – June due to effects of drought24
    • Veal numbers increased due to first full year of operations since acquisition of Ramsey meats24
      • up 25% on previous year24
      • Veal floor had been operating at 40% before Ramsey Meats purchase24
        • Now operating close to 85%24
    • Beef throughput was up 7%24
      • Beef floor operating at 100%, yearly cycle average 90%24
      • Processing 4,000 head a week24
        • Wagyu kill for six regular customers makes up 10% of beef throughput24
          • Challenging processing Wagyu because of customers requirement of different cutting lines for global customers and different branding and packaging24
    • Not a 12 month period record of throughput24
      • last quarter, weekly records of throughput were being achieved24
        • Saturday shifts being worked24
          • Possibly the first time the plant has operated on Saturdays24
  • Direct Consignment incentive $450,000 for about 80,000 head24
    • Achieving a new record level in  12/1324
  • Currently approximately 1500 members, cattle and pork producers24
    • 1350 regarded as active.24
  • NCMC Chairman at this time – John Seccombe24
  • Nov. Before tax profit -$3.9M for 2012/2012, up from $839,000 for 2011/20121
  • Passed Russian regulatory audit in November 2012, restoring full access to emerging market there1
  • Offering livestock suppliers a 20c/kg carcase weight premium on vealers meeting Pasturefed Cattle assurance system (PCAS)5.
    • Veal cattle 70-150kg5
    • have identified a large international customer who is keen to adopt PCAS as part of brand story5
  • Livestock suppliers under PCAS are receiving 20c / kg carcase weight premium for vealers25
    • A large international customer is keen to adopt program as part of its brand story25
    • 20c /kg is twice amount offered for PCAS on the beef floor.25
  • Veal throughput had increased 25% since the 18 months acquisition of Ramsey meats.25
    • Veal carcase around 120kg25
    • Vealers can range from 70 – 150kg25
  • Australian processors face higher costs of production, PCAS offers a way to differentiate their brand25
  • NCMC purchase Manning Foods36


  • June. End of year profit for 2013 / 2014 $25.9M. Year ending 30/06/201416
    • High rates of slaughter due to drought
  • In general profitability across Australian export processing industry if high27
    • high export demand27
    • Abundance of relatively cheap cattle caused by drought27
      • Producers are receiving poor livestock prices27
  • NSW Adult Cattle Slaughter throughput – www.mla.com.au
    • Statistics only for the State of NSW financial years.
    • Comparing monthly slaughter for entire state of NSW.

  • September. Beef and Sheepmeat processors feature predominantly among Australia’s largest 500 privately owned companies.26

Source. Beef Central. 24.09.2014

  • Red meat sector presence in the top 500 listing is important26
    • 14 businesses listed were associated with the Meat and Livestock industry26
      • 12 were either processors or non-packer exporters26
    • Reflects the broad business activity of the red meat industry across the nation26
    • Most beef businesses are located in rural areas. Significant employers in those areas26
      • Top 4 red meat entries supporting close to 9,000 regional full time staff.26
    • All the red meat companies showed increased turnover in last financial year26
      • Once in a generation business opportunity driven by abundance of slaughter stock at cheap prices due to widespread drought26
        • particularly those plants with access to international markets.26
      • Normally abattoirs high volume, low margin enterprises26
        • this year high volume, high margin26


  • March. Northern Co-Op export licence isn’t locked into the service of its foreign owner
    • Duopoly squeeze on producers causes pressure on prices and price signals producers do/don’t receive.15
      • Duopoly pressure is supermarkets in the domestic market that buy 60-65% of the domestic market and foreign ownerships hold on the export markets15
      • Australian beef processing is effectively owned by its major export market15
        • United States – in the form of Teys and Cargill15
        • Brazil – JBS15
    • Minimal opportunity for independent operator / producers to gain processing space to export Tier 1 to China or other Asian destinations15
    • Efficiencies coming onstream in abattoir technology mean that a small southern works might be constructed for half the price of AACo’s operation at Livingstone, Darwin” Mr Burton Taylor, former chairman of AACo.15
    • Processor ‘gouging’ over the past 2 years of drought induced turnoff has occured15
  • June. Casino, Northern Co-Operative Meat Co posts a $23M profit before tax for 2015/2015, year ended 30/06/201515
    • Turnover of $301M, Net profit after tax of $17.9M38
    • Total assets of $134.4M 38
    • Result due to a number of factors15
      • record cattle throughput for the year15
        • Many stock turned off to slaughtered due to drought conditions15
    • Second years profit represents 2 of the best back-to-back years in the business’s 82 year history16
      • Bonus incentives to members totalling $3M16
      • Shareholders to receive dividend payments 12% of share capital value16
        • in addition to livestock supply incentive payments16
  • NSW Adult Cattle Slaughter throughput – www.mla.com.au
    • Statistics only for the State of NSW financial years.
    • Comparing monthly slaughter for entire state of NSW.

  • November. Significant capital projects to be undertaken include16
    • upgrading cold storage with the installation of plate freezing technology16
    • automated robotic system in the cold storage area16
    • upgrades to the beef floor16
      • Modification to the twin lead up races to knocking box16
        • replacement of conventional box with rotary box with the addition of accumulator chain16
    • new boilers16
    • waste management treatment facility at the tannery16
  • New capital projects planned to be commissioned in 201616
  • Outlook for 2016 was that stock prices would remain at or near historical highs16
    • Expectation that 10-15% reduction in cattle numbers being processed than previous financial year16
      • As per Meat and Livestock Australia predictions16
  • Service kill partners currently using the plant total approximately 16016
    • 20 core larger clients16
    • Others are smaller butchers or wholesale operators16
  • Facility has capability to kill 8,000 cattle per week on two separate processing floors16
    • One floor processes stock over 150kg16
    • Veal floor processed lighter stock16
  • Provides customers with world-class facility to process beef, veal or pork16
  • Accreditation as an approved processor for16
    • EU (European Union)
    • US (United States)
    • Japan
    • China
    • Korea
    • Halal
    • Organic and biodynamic markets
  • Operates and maintains a secure segregation system for carcases intended for separate markets16

Source http://ncmc-co.com.au. 23.08.2017

  • Largest component of business is Casino Service Processing (CSP) business division16
    • Operated in conjunction with Casino Hide Tanners16
      • Capacity to process more than 900,000 cattle hides per year16
        • Processes hides from green through to wet blue leather.16
  • NCMC independently operate their own marketing range of brand lines16
  • Casino will close one of it’s two beef chains for the season on 20/11/201528
    • inevitable undersupply of stock has caused the early closure28
    • Veal chain will be close 13/11/201528
      • Veal will be shifted to single chain until proposed final closure date of 16/12/201528
    • 150 casual staff will be put-off early28
    • Permanent staff will not be re-trenched or otherwise affected28
  • Had been a stock throughput decline of 30% recently28
    • Adult cattle numbers had declined 20%28
    • Veal numbers were back 70%28
      • Impossible to maintain both chains later into the season28


  • “Australian beef industry has gone from a 35 year high in beef herd size, to a 20 year low in the space of just 2 years” Simon Stahl, CEO, NCMC28


  • “Australian processors have been operating 30% above normal capacity for the last 2 years as producers responded to drought conditions by turning in their cattle for processing” Simon Stahl, CEO NCMC28


  • Subject to rain Casino plans to re-open its beef chain after a 3 week break on 11/01/201628
  • JBS Australia Townsville and Teys Australia announce early closures for the season due to cattle availability28
  • December.

Source. Beef Central 29.12.2015


  • January. Infrastructure improvements are installed29
    • Upgrades will cost approximately $40M33
      • Tannery improvements costing $7M33
  • February. Meat and Livestock Australia 2016 industry projections predict a likely fall in the number of slaughtered cattle for 201634

Source Beef Central 27.01.2016

  • 2016 Beef kill Australia wide expected to be 7.6M head34
    • 18% decline from high point in 201434
    • 2017 is expected that kill numbers will be 7M head34
      • Lowest number since 199534
  • Live exporters are mounting increasing pressure against beef processors in Australia34
    • ‘Traditional’ processors areas of procurement for cattle are being entered by exporters to fill live boat orders.34
      • The separation that once existed in terms of live weight between boat (live export) and processed cattle appears to be breaking down.34
  • International markets are currently in a poor state34
    • Australian meat processors in general are making losses on almost all lines of slaughter cattle being processed.34
    • Producers previously had to wait long periods for kill space to sell stock to slaughter now those wait times have lessened34
  • Casino plant had cut back on the veal processing chain last year has resumed to processing on the chain of 50%34
  • Casino beef chain is currently operating at 70%34
  • March. Wiley undertakes major infrastructure improvements at Casino29
  • 4 Projects29
    1. New Cold chain management facility29
      • reduction in product movement and multiple handlings29
      • Implementing ASRS (Automated storage and retrieval system)29
        • 1st in a frozen environment in Australia29
        • 2nd installation in the world29
      • Capacity of 4840 cartons, throughput of 14,000 cartons per day29
        • Dematic smart sort carton system – European product33
        • Improvements in efficiency and traceability29
        • Increased storage capacity 33
        • Reduced manual handling and forklift movements33
      • Plate freezing capacity, blast chill tunnel 30
        • All product will be able to be frozen and chilled onsite33
      • loading dock cold chain compliant30
        • Ability to handle shipping containers and pantech trucks30
          • Trucks reverse into ‘igloo’ and seal encloses around the access point30
            • This will soon be a standard feature in the industry30
      • Completion is expected Mid 2016


Source Wiley 20.09.2016

  1. Design and construct knocking box and race system29
    • over 100 operators that use the facilities29
      • Require efficient facilities with a highly trained workforce29
    • Design principles based on Temple Grandin methods29

 Source Wiley 19.03.2016

  • Twin rotary knocking boxes30
    • design modification allows operator to change unit to suit the beast being slaughtered30
    • operates 30% faster than previous system33
    • Suits a larger range of animals30
    • Reduces stress on animal30
    • Longer than standard units30
  • Pivotal part of the abattoir process, setting rhythm for rest of facility29
  • Equipment was fitted offsite and installed in January29
  • Veal race was also re-directed.29

Source Wiley 20.09.2016

    1. Supply and relocated steam services29
      • Installed in January29
      • Utilises compressed air and hot water29
      • Previous existing structures were unable to support the loads and new gantries had to be made29


  1. Upgrade to waste water treatment at the Tannery29
    • Work at the Tannery will begin in June 201629
      • Costing $7M33
    • Upgrade existing chrome precipitation plant30
      • Improvements to waste stream segregation30
      • Additional hair removal with new hair savers30
    • Upgrades allow for marketing of hides to higher value markets30
  • Casino is approved for export to the USA, Japan, Korea and EU.29
    • Holding certification or organic and Halal processing29
    • Facility can process 12,500 cattle per week29
  • Improvements occurred while the plant was still in operation29
    • On- site access was limited29
    • Important not to interrupt production output being conducted29
      • Often work was conducted outside normal operating hours and at night29
  • May. Australia’s top 100 food and drink companies identifies 16 closely aligned with red meat processing, further processing or value adding sectors35
    • 2014 and 2015 delivered record processing thoughputs of livestock across Australia35

Source Beef Central 12.05.2016

  • June. ACCC (Australian Consumer and Competition Commission) hear from a local producer claiming that the region has suffered in recent years due to the changing dynamics of the local processing sector.36
    • Casino purchasing Ramsey Meats (2011) and Manning Foods (2013)36
      • Reduced the number of buyers operating on vealers in the local market from 3 to 1.36
      • Once the Co-Operative began to process it’s own cattle it impacted negatively on producer returns36
      • Traditionally Casino plant had paid a significant premium to the EYCI (Eastern Young Cattle Indicator), in the past few years this had been reversed.36
        • In 2010 Casino paid 27c/kg above EYCI36
        • In 2011 Casino paid 42c/kg above EYCI36
        • In 2012 Casino paid 30c/kg above EYCI36
        • Once Casino took over Ramsey meats in 2012 result was negative 2c/kg36
        • In 2014 Casino paid 20c /kg less than EYCI36
        • In 2015 Casino paid 31c /kg less than EYCI36
  • Casino plant had been operating at 30% capacity prior to the decision to operate as a veal processor in its own right36
  • CEO Simon Stahl refuted claims “EYCI was not a vealer based pricing indicator and was irrelevant in comparing against vealer prices”36
    • NCMC represented only 1% of young cattle traded.36
  • Operating as a service kill operator has some advantages but also weaknesses36
    • If individual operators start to lose money or they have a better option they go elsewhere36
    • Beef floor continues to operate predominantly as a service kill36
  • 2015 / 2016 financial year Casino makes a $1.57M profit before tax.37
    • Result would have been worse had it not been for the high level of throughput in the July to December 2015 period37
      • Numbers dropped significantly across Australia for all processors in January to June 2016 period37
    • NCMC had lost some of its service kill customers in the last 12 37
      • Specialised Wagyu sector was still a major part of the plants throughput37
        • 5 or 6 of Australia’s largest Wagyu  supply chains conduct service kills at Casino37
          • 20% of the plants throughput37
    • Beef chain numbers had been down 37% on the previous year
      • 2015 / 2016 was the lowest throughput for the last 15 years37
    • A significant loss in trading is expected in 2016 / 2017 due to the downturn in numbers37
  • NSW Adult Cattle Slaughter throughput – www.mla.com.au
    • Statistics only for the State of NSW financial years.
    • Comparing monthly slaughter for entire state of NSW.

  • Top 100 Australian food and beverage companies list

Source Beef Central 27.02.2016

  • September. Tannery Infrastructure improvement work has been completed30
    • Cold chain work expected to be completed October – November 2016.30
  • October.Casino for the first time has adopted service kill of manufacturing types (Cows and Bulls) to underpin rates of throughput37
  • Casino is currently killing 3 or 4 days a week on both beef and veal chain37
    • Processing 500 – 800 cattle per day37
  • Pork Processing business of NCMC is an important strategic diversification for the co-op37
  • Co-operative CEO at this time John Seccombe37
  • Casino General Manager Simon Stahl37
  • November.Top 100 list is released of Australian Business Council of Co-operatives and Mutuals (BCCC)38
    • Looks at Co-operatives and mutual enterprises in Australia38
    • Agriculture is relatively poorly represented in the list.38
    • Casino plant operated by NCMC ranked 27th on the list.38


  • Facility can process 12,500 bovines per week17
  • Accreditations and Licences are available for viewing at this site NCMC

Source http://ncmc-co.com.au. accessed 23.08.2017

  • March. Chinese Premier visits Australia may yield significant trade access improvements for Australian beef and sheepmeat40
  • Trade access reform talks with China focus on key areas40
    • Removing current restrictions in chilled meat that only currently allow 12 Australian establishments to export chilled meat to China40
    • Opening up access to all Australian export eligible meat40
      • Currently access is limited by licence40
        • 15 red beef plants looking to export to China that don’t hold a licence40
        • With up to 60 beef and sheepmeat plants seeking to achieve access to China40
  • Approval is given to some beef and lamb processors in Australia to export chilled meat to China42
  • June. Casino plant is fined $15,000 from the NSW Environment Protection Agency (EPA)41
    • EPA claim Casino failed to meet the requirements of a Pollution reduction program at the abattoir and tannery41
    • NCMC rejects allegations saying the breach refers to a report submitted by NCMC41
    • IN early 2016 NCMC was required to develop a plan that demonstrated sustainable wastewater management at the premises by 30/12/201841
      • required a report to be submitted to the EPA setting out a program and measures41
      • EPA claim the report failed to address key issues41
      • Pollution reduction programs are included in the licensing environment protection licences and are legally binding41
    • NCMC have invested $10M on improvements to waste water management over the last 5 years41
  • Since 1990, more than 90 abattoirs across Australia have closed.41
    • Mostly in regional areas41
  • NCMC currently employ about 1,000 employees across 5 core business divisions41
  • 140,000 people employed in the red meat processing sector across Australia41
  • Cost pressures on manufacturing in Australia were real.41
    • if all stakeholders didn’t address the issues the red meat processing industry will move off shore.41
      • Like the steel and automotive industry have already done.41
  • NSW Adult Cattle Slaughter throughput – www.mla.com.au
    • Statistics only for the State of NSW financial years.
    • Comparing monthly slaughter for entire state of NSW.

  • July 26. China temporarily bans beef imports from six Australian meatworks due to concerns about labelling non-compliance.42
    • No suggestions of health or food safety42
    • Issues concerned multiple breaches to do with inner and outer labelling, on a small number of cartons 45
    • Chinese labelling requirements may seem pedantic but product substitution in China is very common45
      • Particularly through the grey trade routes45
    • 6 plants had been reported as suspended on the Administration of Quality supervision, Inspection and Quarantine of China website (AQSIQ)42
      • Australian beef exports worth more than $600M last year42
        • China is the 4th largest market42
        • 2015 /16 exports to China of beef and sheep meats $970M (160,000 tonnes)45
    • Australian abattoirs affected are42
      • NSW
        • Casino (Northern cooperative Meat Co)42
        • Scone (Primo – JBS)45
      • QLD
        • Canon Hill (Australian Country Choice)42
        • Kilcoy (Kilcoy Pastoral Co)42
        • Rockhampton (Beef City – JBS)45
      • SA
        • Murray Bridge (Thomas Foods International – Murray Bridge)45
    • Shipments of meat were currently on the water42
      • Shipments were allowed to enter 28/07/2017 if they had already been dispatched prior to 24/07/201744
    • Need to resolve any labelling issues and AQSIQ and restore normal trade for the 6 affected plants425
    • US beef imports begin into China4
      • Direct competition against Australian products42
      • First time for 13 years USA have exported to China42
  • Australian government officials were working with industry and Chinese authorities to resolve the Chinese ban issue urgently.43
    • Australian and China have a strong bilateral trade relationship43
    • An audit was conducted of Australian facilities affected44
    • Beef industry commentators were mindful of any opinions that may cause negative implications to the talks and meetings to resolve the issue43
  • July 28. Chinese meat import ban is lifted.
    • Inability of Australian processors to access the market caused a combined market loss of $1M per day48
  • China had imposed a surprise blanket ban on chilled beef 3 years ago45
    • 1,000 containers of product had been affected at that time45
      • New Zealand had been imposed with 2013 ban and approached negotiations over re-entry with an assertive style45
        • It was in-effective with New Zealand only regaining access to China markets in the last few weeks45
    • Much less product was in transit with this current ban45
      • If the ban wasn’t resolved quickly the chilled meat may to be frozen down to preserve it45
        • Freezing the meat would lessen its value considerably45
      • If the containers in transit hadn’t been allowed in they may have had to have been re-exported to other markets at a lower value and frozen.45
  • August. Claims made in Federal Parliament that containers of Australian beef are about to be stranded on Chinese wharves are false46

Source Beef Central 15.08.2017

  • Australian red meat processing industry’s peak industry council call on all levels of government to recognise the impact that record input costs, regulatory burden and encumbered market access is having on the industry48
    • An axis of issues impact profitability and growth48
  • Churchill abattoir at Ipswich recently closed, leaving 500 staff out of work48
  • Meat processing industry is currently operating in the midst of the worst terms of trade in its history48
    • Record high livestock prices48
    • Livestock supply constraints48
    • Increasing input costs, including energy48
    • unfavourable exchange rate48
    • Burdensome and duplicative government oversight48
    • uncertain export trading environment, including technical market access difficulties48

Sources. Casino

  1. ‘Casino records $3.9M profit, driven by drought-induced throughput’ Beef Central 06.11.13
  2. ‘South Grafton plant to close’ Beef central 24.10.11
  3. ‘Casino takes big stake in Ramsey meats’ Beef Central 06.11.13
  4. Aus-meat Accreditation listing as at 14.01.2013
  5. ‘Casino’s new PCAS veal program to offer 20c/kg premium’ Beef central 06.11.13
  6. www.ncmc-co.com.au
  7. ‘Tender for Casino abattoir upgrades’ www.ncmc-co.au
  8. NSW Parliament 26.10.1999
  9. ‘Casino Abattoir Takes Up Ramsey Operations’ www.themeatsite.com 25.10.2011
  10. ‘Strong turnaround in profit for Casino’ Beef Central 08.11.2012
  11. ‘Bobby calf comeback at Casino with new veal export market on the cards’ ABC Rural 04.02.2015
  12. http://www.parliament.nsw.gov.au. Questions on notice in parliament dated 31.05.2011
  13. ‘New regulations to ensure welfare of animals in NSW abattoirs’ Foodmagazine. 18.05.2012
  14. ‘Northern Co-Operative Meat company says jobs will go’ http://www.abc.net.au. 15.03.2011
  15. ‘Supply chokeholds ‘strangle producers’ http://www.farmonline.com.au 17.03.2015
  16. ‘$23M profit for Casino’s NCMC plant, after record throughput year’ Beef Central 02.11.2015
  17. Casino Service Processing. http://ncmc-co.com.au. Sourced 23.08.2017
  18. ‘Supply, $A behind Casino Meat Cooperative loss’ Beef Central 09.11.2011
  19. ‘Casino takes big stake in Ramsey Meats’ Beef Central 11.01.2012
  20. ‘New CEO for Casino plant’ Beef Central 15.02.2012
  21. ‘Strong turnaround in profit for Casino’ Beef Central 07.11.2012
  22. ‘Supplier opportunity emerges as PCAS momentum grows at Casino’ Beef Central 13.08.2013
  23. ‘Casino records $3.9M profit, driven by drought-induced throughput’ Beef Central 04.11.2013
  24. ‘Casino’s new PCAS veal program to offer 20c/kg premium’ Beef Central 05.11.2013
  25. ‘Processors feature prominently among Australia’s 500 largest private companies’ Beef Central 24.09.2014
  26. ‘Bitter-sweet result, as Casino lodges record $25M pre-tax profit’ Beef Central 05.11.2014
  27. ‘Casino joins list of early beef plant closures’ http://www.beefcentral.com. 13.11.2015
  28. https://www.wiley.com.au/news-events/ncmc-amn-article/
  29. https://www.wiley.com.au/blog/ncmc-upgrade-update-sept/
  30. $30M project will help transform Casino’s Northern Co-op beef plant’ Beef Central 29.12.2015
  31. ”Full steam ahead’ Wiley 18.12.2015
  32. ‘Casino processor pumps profits back into productivity’ The Land 19.01.2016
  33. ‘Weekly kill: More cracks starting to show, as plants succumb…’ Beef Central 09.02.2016
  34. ‘Red meat processors feature prominently among Australia’s top 100 food companies’ Beef Central 12.05.2016
  35. ‘ACCC forum: Changing cattle market dynamics at Casino’ Beef Central 14.06.2016
  36. ‘Dramatic year on year contrast…..’ Beef Central 24.10.2016
  37. ”Red meat sector poorly-represented in cooperative business structures’ Beef Central 21.11.2016
  38. ‘Red meat processors feature prominently in Top 100 food….’ Beef Central 27.12.2016
  39. ‘Beef exporters confident of China access breakthrough during premier’s visit’ Beef Central 20.03.2017
  40. ‘Casino beef plant rejects $15,000 EPA fine’ Beef Central 08.06.2017
  41. ‘China orders halt to red meat imports from several Australian meatworks’ ABC Rural News 26.07.2017
  42. ‘China suspends six Australian beef business’s’ http://www.farmonline.com.au 26.07.2017
  43. ‘Breakthrough in Australia’s beef with China over meat exports’ ABC News 28.07.2017
  44. ‘What yesterday’s China processing suspension mean for Australian meat exports’ Beef Central 27.07.2017
  45. ‘Nothing behind Labor’s claims of beef access blockages in China, AMIC says’ Beef Central 15.08.2017
  46. ‘MLA Projections: Tightening supply set to further increase competition….’ Beef Central 27.01.2016
  47. ‘Abattoir closures must force recognition of…….’ Beef Central 30/8/2017
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