Tag Archives: Queensland meat processors

Mackay

Mackay abattoir, owned by NH Foods trading as Thomas Borthwick and sons is a modern and currently operating facility. Organically accredited specialising in high quality grass fed beef.

Other Names

  • Thomas Borthwick
  • Borthwick’s meatworks
  • Nippon Mackay

Current Operation

  • Is currently in operation as at 2016.

Location

  • Mackay is located on the east coast of Queensland, Approximately 970km north of Brisbane, 334 km north of Rockhampton and 394km south of Townsville.
  • The Nippon Mackay abattoir is located at Bakers Creek approximately 10km south of Mackay.
    Aust. Mackay

Mackay

Owner

Operation

  • Mackay is certified for organic beef production.2
    • Specialising in high quality, chilled grass fed beef
    • Cattle are sourced from mainly Central QLD
    • Export markets include Japan, USA, Republic of Korea, South Africa, Russia, Europe, Taiwan, Mexico, Ukrain and Indonesia.13
  • Nippon currently own 3 abattoirs in Australia,

Other Abattoirs in the region

Pentland (QLD)

Ross River abattoir (QLD)

Townsville – Stuart (QLD)

Australian abattoir locations

abattoirs_edited-1

To access this map go to Australian Abattoirs – Google map interactive

History of Mackay meat processing facility

1890’s

  • Recognition that the export trade of meat needs to be developed for the economic benefit of Australian producers (Pg 1041).1
    • Existing low values are due to fact that half to one third of surplus meat is exported.1
    • Should be exporting 250,000 to 300,000 carcases of beef.1
    • £1M pounds is required to construct meatworks.1
    • If not constructed £10M pounds could be added to existing capital of the banks and still their securities would be unprofitable(Pg 1042).1
  • Parliament develope “The Meat and Dairy Produce Encouragement Act”(Pg 1042).1
    • Levy imposed on both cattle and sheep.1
    • 2 funds .1
      1. Dairying herds
      2. Beef herds
    • Fund allows for establishment of meatworks at.1
      • Pinkenba
      • Bowen
      • Redbank
      • Cardwell
      • Broadsound
      • Gladstone
      • Brisbane
      • Charleville
      • Mackay
      • Biboohra (Mareeba)
      • Burketown and
      • Sellheim

1905

  • Mackay abattoir inception.56
  • Authors note – there is a significant discrepancy as to when this site was established.

1954

  • Beef Cattle in the district of Mackay totalled 268,809 head.15
  • Meeting is held to discuss possibility of establishment of an abattoir in Mackay.15
    • If constructed must allow for extension to cope with increase in cattle export.15
  • Mackay Local Abattoir board applied for £5,000 debenture loan to build the facility.15
    • Refused by 5 Insurance companies
    • Refused by 2 banks and
    • Public curator

1965

  • July. Mackay, Baker’s Creek works opens – Borthwicks.16

1980’s

  • The Australian beef trading/processing environment is worsening(Pg 119).5
    • QLD Cattle herd in 1975 was 14M head.5
      • QLD Cattle herd in 1987 is 9M.5
    • There is low utilisation rates through meatworks and the need to reduce the number the meatworks is seen to improve efficency and reduce operational costs (Pg 120).5

1983

  • Federal Industries Assistance Commission produce a report that reveals the Australian meat processing industry has 38% excess capacity (Pg 126).7

1986 

  • April. Joint Venture Proposal is begun to amalgamate.7
    • FJ Walkers (Owned by Elders IXL)
      • Already own 10 abattoirs, including 4 key export works and meat packing plants in Australia (Pg 119).5
    • Metro Meat Industries
    • Smorgon Consolidated Industries
    • Tancred Bros
    • Thomas Borthwick & Sons
      • Borthwicks to add their plants of  Mackay and Bowen (QLD).7
  • Wide spread concern of potential domination of the QLD beef market by the merger entity (Pg 127).7
  • May. Trade Practices Commission (TPC) holds a investigation.7
  • June. TPC announce will not place legal impediment to the merger.7
  • July. Borthwicks  withdraw from talks(pg 120).5
    • Borthwicks had operation problems of it’s own and wanted to sell all Australian assets including hides and skin processing not just jewels of Bowen and Mackay.5
    • Portland (Vic) would be particularly difficult to sell due to union unrest.5

1987

  • Is listed in Aus-Meat Accreditation List as Establisment #67.8
    • Borthwick. T & Sons Ltd.

1988 

  • January. Teys Brothers are in discussion with Borthwick to purchase Borthwick Australian assets and a Japanese branch of the company (Pg 121).5
  • Teys had been in a joint venture with Canada Packers (Pg 121).5
    • Canada Packers withdrew from the joint venture which influenced Teys to seek financial backing from Kerry Packer in bidding for the Borthwick assets
    • Purchase price $25M Australian
  • AMH saw the ‘new entrant’, Teys as a threat to AMH’s ability to remain profitable and achieve further rationalisation in the northern region (Pg 122).5
  • AMH commented that Borthwick operations were the main price competition in QLD (Pg 122).5
    • If Borthwicks not in the market AMH would earn $10 a head more per animal.5
  • AMH offered Borthwicks $29M for Australian Assets (Pg 122)
  • TPC advised AMH not to proceed without their consultation as they would likely contravene Sec 50 Trade Practices Act and likely dominate the QLD cattle market (Pg 123).5
  • TPC placed an injunction for AMH to withdraw offer (Pg 123).5
    • AMH resisted arguing the the order would likely allow Teys to purchase without actual determination of contravention of section 50.5
    • AMH  offered undertaking that Borthwicks business’s would be maintained and conducted independently and in competition with the business of AMH.5
    • TPC accepted but possible divestiture order was of significant commercial risk to AMH.5
      • TPC announced an inquiry was to be held.5
    • Borthwicks sale to AMH was accepted 26/01/1988
  • Borthwick Hides and skins business were immediately sold.5
  • All remaining parts of Borthwicks were combined with AMH
  • February. TPC begins inquiry.5
    • TPC accepts that northern QLD is a seperate market to central and southern QLD.5
    • AMH control 5 of the 10 abattoirs in the region.5
  • Bowen abattoir could lift total regional slaughter capacity to over 76.76%.5
  • TPC ruled AMH had contravened section 50.5
    • Ruling was AMH must divest itself of Bowen & Mackay
      • Could retain control of Portland (pg 128).7
    • 3 months to do so
    • appeals and cross appeals conducted.
  • Trade Practices Commission forced sale due to AMH having dominant market share.2
  • March. TPC final judgement ruling on AMH case (Pg 123).5
    • Case is held as precedent on what constitutes the geographical limits of a product market
  • While the court case was in process AMH had been operating the plants(Pg 123).5
    • Profits from them had been above market expectations.5
    • Bowen was of marginal importance
    • Mackay was significant because of the access to lucrative Japanes market (Pg 128).7
  • AMH offered QLD plants to Anglo Irish $32M (Pg 124).5
    • initially Anglo Irish accepted but revalued plants at considerably less and withdrew from the deal
  • TPC increased pressure on AMH to sell plants (pg 124).5
    • If AMH didn’t sell them TPC would put plants up for public auction at market price
  • Nippon Meat Packers, in consortium with Mackay Sugar to purchase the Bowen and Mackay plants (Pg 123,86).5
    • reported $32M

1997

  • July. Is listed at this point in time in Aus-Meat Accreditation Listing.9
    • Beef Export Abattoir #67 Thomas Borthwick & Sons P/L
  • November. Nippon announce closure of the plant.17
    • Loss of employment of 450 workers
  • government encourage company and unions to continue negotiations of a new EBA.17
    • With government prepared to offer assistance package to facilitate new investment in the plant to bring up to world class standards if agreement is reached

1990

8. ABARES Nov 2011_edited-1

Proportion of cattle slaughtered by ownership of abattoirs 1990
Source ABARES foreign ownership 2011 Pg 31

1991

  • 77 Beef export Abattoirs are in operation in Australia at this time.51
    • 27 have some level of foreign ownership.51
    • Ownership dominated by Japan, UK and the US.51

1994

  • Nippon purchase (Pg 86).5 Wingham (NSW)
    • Wingham is a major beef exports facility.5
    • Tomen sells it’s interest to Nippon.5
      • Major shareholder in Anvic Meat Exports Pty Ltd.5

1995

  • Simon Stahl is appointed manager of the Mackay Plant57

1997

  • Nippon has invested $200M in abattoirs and feedlots over the previous decade(Pg 86).5
    • 3rd Largest meat processor in Australia.5
    • Exporting to 34 countries.5

NH foods Oakey export_edited-1

NH Foods holdings. Source www.nh-foods.com.au – General Information accessed 21/12/2015

2000

  • Seasonal closure date of works 20/12/2000.19

2001

  • Seasonal re-opening date of works 22/01/2001.19

2002

  • Mackay facility is currently operating.20
    • 5 days per week.20
      • Day and Afternoon
      • Voluntary Saturdays
    • Processing 1,020 head per day.20

2003

  • February. Borthwicks fined $15,000 after 3 employees overcome by carbon monoxide gas in a chiller room.37

2004

  • March. Borthwicks fined $40,000 for spilling 4 tonnes of tallow into Bakers Creek after a pumping tank overflowed.37
  • May. Borthwicks fined $40,000 due to death of a trainee export buyer when a stack of frozen meat fell on him.37
  • Paid $334,000 compensation to an employee who suffered permanent disability due to cabon monoxide incident.37
  • July. Facility was shut down 12 hours and 350 employees evacuated due to ammonia spill.37

2008

  • Is listed at this point in time in Aus-Meat Accreditation Listing.10
    • Export Abattoir ( Beef Offal) A+
      • #67 Thomas Borthwick & Sons

2005

  • Rockhampton – Lakes Creek (QLD) receives $660,000 federal grant to re-open it’s meatworks under Regional partnerships program.21
    • Rockhampton Lakes Creek had closed in 2002, 1,200 staff lost jobs.21
    • Jointly owned by Teys Investments Pty Ltd and Consolidated Pastoral Company Pty Ltd (Kerry Packer).21
  • Neither Rockhampton (AMH) or Mackay (Nippon) received any finanical support.21
    • Both sites are in direct competition with Rockhampton Lakes Creek.21
  • October. Mackay embarks on extensive recruitment drive locally but to practically no avail.22
    • workers have left to seek employment in the mining industry.22
  • Mackay employs 20 Brazillian boners to replace local workers.22
    • 2 year working Visa, after which they can apply for Australian citizenship.22
    • Workers will receive $950 a week.22
      • In Brazil they earned $200 a month, same work.22
  • Borthwicks plan to import more Brazilian workers next year.22
  • December. 2005 has seen a 50% turnover in the 500 plus staff at the plant.23
  • Borthwicks will employ up to 50 Brazilians in 2006.23
  • Mackay plant contributed to the Mackay economy in 2005.23
    • $17M in wages.23
    • Purchased 150,000 head of stock at cost of $135M.23
      • Numbers down due to restricted supply of cattle due to drought and graziers holding cattle to rebuild herds

QLD Drought 2003_2005_edited-1

Queensland drought situation 2003 – 2005 www.longpaddock.qld.gov.au

  • Plant seasonal closure 18/12/2005.23

2006

  • Planned seasonal opening Mid January first shift.23
    • second shift in February
  • January. Plan to process 190,000 this year.24
  • Processed 160,000 last year.24
    • 50 Brazilian staff employed
    • some South African tradesmen due to start soon
  • New staff will allow production throughput to lift from 600 to more than 900 head a day.24
    • Staff numbers in total to almost 520
  • August. Up to 30 workers lost jobs due to short supplies of cattle.25
    • second boning shift has been suspended
  • Employees say had less than 25 minutes notice of their termination.25
  • Staff cuts based on ‘last on, first off’ basis.25
  • Australian workers saying they lost their jobs while imported workers kept theirs.25
  • Production to drop from targets of 900 head to 650 head daily.25
  • Shortage of cattle and workers has taken it’s toll.25
  • To operate effectively the facility needs to hire an additional 140 people.25
  • 2 workers who had been on probation period loose their employment after consideration of their performance by the company.26
    • Was done in accordance with EBA
    • Both offered work for the day and one to the end of the week

2007

  • August. 40 Brazilian workers on 457 Visa’s travelled to Rockhampton to meet with AMH for employment at the plant in Rockhampton.27
    • AMH recently been taken over by JBS Friboi
  • September. Federal Member from QLD, National Party, De-Anne Kelly says AMH Holdings is threatening the viability of smaller abattoirs by poaching their overseas workers.28
    • Claims 18 Brazilian workers left a local abattoir to work at Dinmore (QLD).
    • Another 30 workers set to leave Mackay – Nippon Meat Packers
  • October. Meatworks will cut pockets off employee overalls and conduct random searches to prevent stealing of gallstones.29

2008

  • January. Seasonal start up expected to begin 24/01/2008.30
  • Anticpating a great year at the meatworks.30
    • Have had 4 years of struggling against drought and labour problems.30
      • turnover of 35 staff every month.30
    • Borthwicks imported workers on ‘457 visas’ from Brazil, South Africa and the Cook Islands.30
      • housed and looked after by the company.30
    • Another 40 Brazilians, as well as Ireland and South Africans with 50 locals would begin.30
    • Mining has shown a significant slowdown in job offers.30
      • At the peak 600 mining jobs were advertised regularly now only 200.30
    • Existing 350 workforce will soon be joined by 100 more.30
    • Expect to process 150,000 head of cattle.30
      • Increase of 10% on previous year.30
  • “It’s been depressing for 4 years, If it weren’t for the fact we were foreign owned we would have had to close” Simon Stahl. Manager at Borthwicks.30
  • Seasonal conditions had improved significantly in the area.30
    • southern regions were still drought stricken.30

2008

  • June. Borthwicks meatworker is awarded $84,587 in damages for workplace injury.31
    • Total damages award was $102,028.31
      • Work Cover received $17,441.31
  • July. Abattoir will be forced to close for 2 days due to a Truck strike that will affect cattle deliveries.32
    • Truck strike was due to concerns of increased registration costs, harsher penalties for working extra hours.32
    • lack of rest stops forced truck drivers to drive longer than they wanted.32

2009

  • January. Seasonal opening 27/01/2009.33
  • A Halal slaughterman is employed allowing the facility to sell beef to Islamic countries.33
    • lucrative market.33
    • more difficult to access than previous years due to protocols.33
    • Many Muslims around the world interested in Australian beef.33
  • Expected to process 150,000 cattle through the year.33
  • December. Borthwicks loose a Supreme Court appeal against a fine for a workplace accident.34
    • 2 accidents combined total of $114,000.34

2007_2009_edited-1

Queensland drought situation 2007 – 2009 www.longpaddock.qld.gov.au

2010

  • October. Joint research is conducted using the abattoir waste solids in the pyrolysis process.35
  • Waste to Energy. MLA project A.ENV.0101 March 2011
    • solid waste streams from red meat processing are generally disposed of at cost by the abattoir.35
    • study was to look at ways the waste can be treated through anaerobic/aerobic biological treatment and improving management practices, reducing disposal costs and minimising fossile fuel consumption.35
    • Ways for the abattoir to produce their own renewable energy.35

IBIS Jun 2010_edited-1

Major Companies in the Australian Red meat processing industry

Source IBIS world June 2010

2011

  • January. Devastating floods across Central and southern QLD and large parts of NSW and Victoria.52
    • affected slaughter numbers to abattoirs.52
  • June. Injured foreign meatworker lodges compensation claim Borthwicks $740,000.36
    • Began work at facility February 2006 earning $807 a week.36
    • Worked until Mid August 2009, then placed on light duties until early 2010.36
      • Employment was terminated due to injuries.36
    • Claims that not enough staff or rest breaks are provided.36
    • Typical work day.36
      • Start 6am
      • Take a 7 minute break at 7.20am
      • 20 minute break at 8.30am
      • 7 minute break 10.15am
      • 30 minutes for lunch at 11.15am
      • 7 minute break at 12.45pm
      • 10 minutes at 1.50pm
      • Finish at 2.45pm.
  • July. Borthwicks found guiltyof failing to discharge workplace health and safety obligations for incident that had occured 8/10/2007 when a meatworker had been trapped between a metal beam and shelving.37
  • September. Borthwicks finsed $70,000 for trapped foot incident.38
    • Borthwicks had provided training to the worker and had safety measures in place that had not been disregarded by Borthwicks.38
    • Finding was based on Borthwicks failing risk management.38

 

2012

  • Currently processing 750 head a day.2
  • January. Mackay meatworks seasonal opening about 24/01/2012.39
  • Manager. Simon Stahl leaves and is appointed CEO of NCMC at Casino57
  • November. Australia’s negotiations with Korean beef export market need to be finalised.40
    • Korean Beef trade is worth $770M.40
    • Delays have stalled with Gillard insistance that an Investor state dispute settlement (ISDS) mechanism in the agreement be excluded.40
    • Korea is Australia’s 3rd largest beef export market.40
      • 2011 146,347 tonnes
      • 15% of Australia’s global beef exports
      • Currently 49% of Korean beef imports
    • Delays in FTA are causing high costs to processors.40
  • Australia’s market position would decline dramatically in 2013 to Korea if the EFT is not finalised soon.40
    • US beef has significant advantages over Australia.40
      • January 2015 will seee US gain a 5.3% tariff advantage
        • Australian been incures 40% tariff to Korea
      • Tariff widens 2.66% each January
        • US entering Korea Tariff free 2026
    • If the FTA is not finalised with similar tariff to US markets.40
      • Australia will incur cumulative loss A$1.4B over 15 years
      • Australia’s share of Korean market falling from current 49% to 26% in 2026.

 Profit Margins_edited-1Nippon Meat Packers Revenue Source IBIS world 2010,2013

revenue_edited-1

Nippon Meat Packers Profit Earnings Source IBIS world 2010,2013

2013

  • Mackay abattoir throughput of meat.41
    • 90% exported
    • 10% for domestic sales
  • Distribution of beef enterprises in the Mackay Whitsunday region is 80% coastal and 20% hinterland.41
    • Many producers combine sugarcane and pasture improvment with cattle production or fattening

2014

  • Nippon Meat Packers Pty Ltd changes name to NH Foods.55
  • Logo NH oakey exports_edited-1

    NH Foods Australia Logo Source  www.nh-foods.com.au

  • April Frozen beef shipments to Russia are temporarily suspended from 07/04/2014.44
    • A similar suspension occurred 31/03/2014 for chilled beef.44
    • Temporary suspension of beef offal imports occurred 27/01/2014.44
  • Wingham exports meat to Russia affected, along with another 29 Australian establishments.44
    • Australia placed additional requirements on its testing requirements.44
    • Russia detected Trenbolone 21/03/2014.44
    • Australian authorities held an immediate meeting with Russian counterparts.44
      • providing details of testing and invited Russia to inspect Australian meat establishments.44
      • Trenbolone is not produced from cattle treated with HGP’s.44
      • Russia has a zero tolerance, most countries have a maximum residue limit.44
  • Russia placed new requirements of detection of Trenbolone.44

 

  • Russia may consider Asia, Chinese port and Indian buffalo meat imports to replace decrease is supplies from the US, European union and Australia.44
  • Australia has been a traditional beef exporter to Russia since the 1970’s.44
    • To July 2012 – June 2013 exported 24,000 tonnes
    • To July 2013 – February 2014 20,000t
    • Trade is worth more than $170M a year
    • Russia is a declining market for Australian beef exports
    • Calendar year to date Russia taken only 1,221t beef
    • Full year exports 2010 and 2011 topped 60,000 tonnes
  • Tropical cyclone Ita hits far north QLD coast.

 

Cyclone Ita April 2014_edited-1

Tropcial Cyclone Ita impacts QLD April 2014 www.longpaddock.qld.gov.au

  • May. Mackay region producers are fairing better with climate conditions than Western QLD.42
    • Drought a significant factor in many areas of QLD
  • Other factors affecting producers are.42
    • high Australian dollar
    • rising debts
    • surplus of cattle due to halting of live export with Indonesia in 2011
  • July. Australia is on the verge of finalising a FTA with Japan.43
    • 97% of exporters set to get preferential treatment or be duty free
    • Japan’s standard 38.5% tariff on frozen beef will be cut to 19.5%
    • Fresh beef exports tariff will drop to 23.5% over the next 15 years
    • Beef Offal, worth $167M will also have reduced tariff and increased quota
  • December. Korea-Australia Free trade agreement enters into force 12/12/2014.50
    • Initially an immediate cut to some tariffs with a further cut 01/01/2015.50

2015

  • January. MLA forecast.53
    • Australian cattle herd has gone from 35 year high (2013) to 20 year low (2015).53
      • Australian cattle herd slip to 26.8M head by June 2015
      • by 2016 expected decline to 26.5M head
      • by 2020 27.9M head
    • Adult cattle slaughter expected to slump 15% year on year.53
      • 2015 to 7.8M head
      • 2020 expected 7.9M slaughter
      • Long term Female average in 2014 52%
        • Normally female kill percentage 47%
          • Only in years 1977, 1998 & 2003 has female kill been above 50%
    • Beef exports record levels in 2014 1.39M tonnes shipped weight.53
      • Expected to drop 20% to 1.3M tonnes in 2015

 

 

2013_2015_edited-1

QLD Drought Situation 2013 – 2015 www.longpaddock.qld.gov.au

  • March. Foreign ownership  in Australian red meat processing.

Nippon share_edited-1

Share of Australian red meat processing

Source The Stock Standard. VFF March 2015

  • April. FK Gardiner & Sons plan to build an abattoir, Darling Downs, Toowoomba.46

 

abattoir capacities dept ag sub consolidation_edited-1

Capacity of major beef abattoirs in QLD. Pg 15

T2 Throughput state beef_edited-1

Share of throughput by state for beef in 2014. Pg 16

T4 processing companies market share_edited-1

Major Processing companies by market share May 2015. Pg 16

M4 direct cattle movements NLIS QLD_edited-1

Cattle Movements to abattoirs. Pg 25

F12 hourly labour costs food manufacturing_edited-1

Hourly labour costs for food manufacturing industry Pg 30

  •  December. Currently listed in Aus-Meat Accreditation Listing
    • #67 Thomas Borthwick & Sons Pty Ltd Export Abattoir (Beef Offal) A+.11
  • Mackay abattoir has a current listing as EUCAS accredited abattoir.12
  • Export markets of Borthwick’s include Japan, USA, Republic of Korea, South Africa, Russia, Europe, Taiwan, Canada, Mexico, Ukraine, Indonesia.13
  • Plant is Halal certified.13
  • Current processing in excess of 750 cattle per day.13
  • Plant closed 10 days earlier than usual for seasonal break.48
  • December. Mackay plant expects it will have to compete hard for cattle in 2016.48
    • Industry has been slaughtering cattle at record rates for the past 3 years.48
      • inevitable a shortage would arrive
    • Current El Nino cycle is creating fear that the rainfall will be reduced in the upcoming wet season.48
      • some graziers are destocking

 

  • American Trim market dropped significantly the last few months.48
    • some processors going into the red
  • Predicts Asian markets opportunities will emerge.48
    • more value add on products
    • Meatworks will look to expand to enable ability to use more of the carcase
    • will see every harvestable portion of organs to be packed

 

  • December. ATO publishes tax data for agribusiness corporates.54
    • Data interpretation – Companies do not pay company tax on revenue (total income) they pay on profits after paying all expenses, including wages, capital replacement, supplier costs and other operating expenses.54
    • Income tax information is for 2013/14.54
  • NH Foods produced Total Income $845,824.273.54
    • Nil taxable income and nil tax payable.54

 

2016

  • January. KAFTA third round of tariff cuts occur 01/01/2016.49
    • Fresh, chilled and frozen beef has a current tariff 34.6%.49
      • Will reduce to 32%
      • Original level was 40%
      • Meat export is worth $A1.07B in 2014/15
      • Korea has always been one of biggest meat export markets
        • Shipments for lamb have increased 35%

 

Sources of Mackay Abattoir

  1. QLD beef industry 1962. pdf
  2. ‘Northern Australian Beef Industry – Assessment of opportunities and risks’ ABARE 2012
  3. House of Representatives Petition. Abattoirs. 09.03.1998.
  4. ‘World on a plate – A history of meat processing in Australia’ Stephen Martyn
  5. ‘Meat Processing in Australia’ IBIS World. June 2010
  6. ‘Employers & Industrial Relations in the Australian Meat Processing Industry’ J OLeary 2008
  7. Aus-Meat Accreditation Listing Nov 1987
  8. Aus-Meat Accreditation Listing July 1997
  9. Aus-Meat Accreditation Listing 18.07.2008
  10. Aus-Meat Accreditation Listing. Accessed 31.12.2015
  11. EUCAS accreditation Dept. Ag. 25.02.2015
  12. www.nh-foods.com.au/thomas-borthwick-sons/
  13. NH Foods brands
  14. ‘Mackay district’ www.trove.nla.gov.au 01.12.1954
  15. www.mackayhistory.org
  16. ‘Mackay Meatworks’ QLD Government media release 11.11.1997
  17. ‘Competition & Exit in Meat Processing’ J Rolfe, R Reynolds 1999
  18. www.cattlefacts.com.au. Work Recess Dates 2000-2001
  19. www.archive.amieu.net 02.07.2002
  20. ‘Packer firm given grant for abattoir’ Sydney Morning Herald 19.02.2005
  21. ‘Meatworks imports workers? The boys from Brazil’ Daily Mercury 21.10.2005
  22. ‘Meatworks to recruit 50 new workers from Brazil’ Daily Mercury 17.12.2005
  23. ‘Abattoir lifts staff numbers’ Daily Mercury 30.01.2006
  24. ‘Struggling abattoir axes 30 workers’ Daily Mercury 21.08.2006
  25. ‘Meatworkers angry at more job losses’ Daily Mercury 23.08.2006
  26. ‘Meatworks hopes to keep workers in Mackay’ ABC News 02.08.2007
  27. ‘More workers to leave Borthwicks abattoir’ ABC Rural 07.09.2007
  28. ‘Abattoir beefs up security after gallstone thefts’ www.mg.co.za 05.10.2007
  29. ‘Our Cash Cows’ Daily Mercury 17.01.2008
  30. ‘Injured worker wins $84,000 payout’ Daily Mercury 10.06.2008
  31. ‘Truck Strike will cause Borthwicks shut-down’ Daily Mercury 26.07.2008
  32. ‘Halal slaughterman to boost Mackay beef exports’ ABC News 27.01.2009
  33. ‘Borthwicks loses court appeal’ Daily Mercury 17.12.2009
  34. Waste to Energy. MLA project A.ENV.0101 March 2011
  35. ‘Injured meatworker sues works’ Daily Mercury 24.06.2011
  36. ‘Meatworker trapped for 20 minutes’ www.questia.com (partial article) 19.07.2011
  37. ‘Company must pay $70,000’ Daily Mercury 12.09.2011
  38. ‘Stock carriers hope for a better year’ Daily Mercury 09.01.2012
  39. ‘Korean beef trade under threat’ The Land 14.11.2012
  40. State of Agriculture region report 2013.
  41. ‘Mackay graziers cash in on strong seasons’ Daily Mercury 08.05.2013
  42. ‘Australia’s free trade agreement with Japan could see prices fall for consumers’ www.news.com 08.07.2014
  43. ‘Update on Russia’s suspension on Australian beef’ Beef Central 03.04.2014
  44. The Stock Standard. VFF March 2015
  45. ‘FKG plans processing move’ QLD Country Life 30.04.2015
  46. Dept Ag. Submission to Market consolidation and the red meat processing sector July 2015
  47. ‘Mackay meatworks gets ready to compete….’ ABC Rural 17.12.2015
  48. ‘Korea cuts import tariffs further’ www.farmonline.com.au 01/01/2016
  49. Trade Minister Media release 03.12.2014
  50. ABARES foreign ownership 2011
  51. ‘Slow season opening for processors’ Beef Central 11.01.2012
  52. ‘MLA forecasts beef market adjustment’ The Land 27.01.2015
  53. ‘ATO publishes tax data for agribusiness corporates’ Beef Central 18.12.2015
  54. www.nh-foods.com.au
  55. Mackay Planning. Connecting Mackay
  56. ‘New CEO for Casino plant’ Beef Central 15.02.2012

Rockhampton – Lakes Creek

There is a historical Lakes Creek abattoir and the current facility that Teys operate at Rockhampton. It is not clear if the two sites are the same location or one was dismantled and another built.

Other Names

  • Rockhampton abattoir – there is another facility in Rockhampton operated by JBS, Rockhampton (QLD – JBS)
  • Lakes Creek abattoir

Current Operation

  • Aus Meat Accreditation registration dated 29/12/2015 #7 – Teys Australia Meat Group Pty Ltd.45
    • registered as a Beef, Offal export facility.45
  • Direct employment enquiries to Teys Employment Information

Location   Owner

Teys Logo_edited-1Source www.teysaust.com.au. the Teys-Cargill Australia Logo

Operation

  • Teys operate 3 feedlots12
    • Jindalee (NSW)12
    • Condamine (QLD)12
    • Charlton (Vic)12
  • Hide Processing Facility in Murgon12
  • Value adding facilities12
    • Hemmant – Produces cooked deli smallgoods and convenience meals12
    • Wagga Wagga – produces case ready goods for retail12

For employment information go to  Teys Employment Information

Other historical and current meat processing facilities located in Australia can be viewed at;

Australian abattoirs inactive map

abattoirs_edited-1

 

History of Rockhampton – Lakes Creek #7

1871

  • The Lakes Creek abattoir was built.(Pg 261)15
    • Owned by an English company – Central Queensland Meat Export Company15
  • Operated as a cannery35
  • The plant was a dominent element in the regions economy40
    • at this time Lakes Creek was a company town40
    • meatworks built housing for its employees40

1872

  • Lakes Creek processes three quarters of all the sheep processed by Queensland canneries (Pg 39)35
  • Facility was heavily in debt due to mainly expenses associated with the Jone patent process (Pg 39)35
    • authors note – I have not found what this patent was but assume it was to do with the technology and process of canning meat.

1874

  • April. company was bankrupt35
  • Enforced closure of the facility due to the high price of cattle. (Pg 261)15
    • Remained idle until 187715

1877

  • Facility was purchased by liquidators of Whitehead & Co. (Pg 261)15
    • Proposal was to move boiling downs works that Whitehead’s owned from Laurel Bank to Lakes Creek.15
    • Whitehead & Co also owned a meatworks at Ramornie (NSW, near Grafton)15
    • Whitehead & Co had a contract to supply 2M lb of preserved meats to the French Government but had been unable to obtain sufficent cattle in NSW to fill the contract15

1880

  • Whitehead & co went into liquidation (Pg 261)15
    • closure was stated as not being the fault of the Lakes Creek operation itself15
  • A second Central QLD Meat Export Co. was formed and reopened the works (Pg 261)15

1883

  • A freezing plant was added (Pg 261)15
  • September this year the chambers were full of frozen meat for the pioneering enterprise of exporting frozen product on the Fiado. The Ship was late and a fire went through the facility15
    • Opportunity had been robbed of Lakes Creek the honour of sending the first consignment to Britian15
      • In 1884 the first cargo of frozen meat was loaded from Bowen but a cyclone stranded the vessel, destroyed the product and the Bowen works.(Pg 262)15
      • The first frozen consignments from Australia didn’t occur until 1896.15
    • 200 employees were out of work15

1884

  • Works resumed operations (Pg 261)15

1885

  • Company went into liquidation (Pg 261)15
    • Due mainly to the expense of rebuilding and installing imported plant equipment15

1886

  • Melbourne Syndicate took the facility over (Pg 261)15
    • Andrew Rowan, George Fairbairn and John Living15

1901

  • Facility was purchased by a company formed in London (Pg 261)15

1910’s

  • Tinned beef was a staple ration for war soldiers in WWI40
    • accompanied by hard tack biscuits40
    • Bully Beef – corruption of the French name “bouilli” meaning boiled or corned, referenced to small hard grains of salt used to preserve the meat40
  • Rockhampton produced various tinned labels – Herford, Devon (not the  pork based luncheon meat of that name) and Hamper40
    • including frozen sides meat for export and domestic butcher shops40
  • All parts of the animal were used40
    • what was not edible was processed into fertiliser and by-products40

1918

  • Major flood year

1928

  • Facility was idle due to the strain of the post war depression (Pg 261)15
    • meat market was very dull15
  • Facility then went to a syndicate headed by Sir William Angliss and FJ Walker (Pg 261)15
    • Operated under their control until 193415

1934

  • Vesteys, British based but international organisation purchased Lakes Creek. (Pg 261)15
  • Facility began to prosper due to the Empire preference granted under the Ottawa Agreement (pg 261)15
    • The Imperial Preference was a series of bilateral agreements of limited tarriffs within the British Empire but higher on goods from the rest of the world. Principal was based on “home producers first, empire producers second, and foreign producers last”16
  • Improved plant, chilling, freezing and processing facilities were established over the coming years.(Pg 261)15
  • By products were saved and processed(Pg 261)15

1938

  • Lakes Creek is paying 4/ per 100lb14
    • authors note – I think the / is shillings.
  • Northern Graziers are complaining of the high costs of freight and low price that Townsville abattoir is paying.14
    • They call for a public abattoir to be established and operated by the government in Townsville.1
      • To operated under the Abattoirs Bill that allowed government to acquire operate the Canon Hill facilities in Brisbane, enacted in 1934 (Pg 264)16

1946

  • Teys formed as a partnership of 4 brothers to process meat for wholesaling and retailing13

1949

  • Queensland herd was deminished due to demands of Australia feeding Allied forces in WWII40
  • Plans were being pushed to develope the channel country in the west and increase QLD’s beef-raising capacity40

1950’s

  • Canned meat, known as bully beef, tinned corn meat was being boxed and sealed on hands-on assembly lines40
    • refer Year 1910 for more info.

packing tinned meats._edited-1Source ‘Bully for our Beef exports’ The Courier Mail 17.07.2011 Workers packing corned beef into cartons at Lakes Creek meatworks

1954

  • February 3. Season commenced38
    • Ended December 1738
    • Flooding Between February 11 to 22 of Fitzroy river system38
    • Killing season 1954 constituted a record38
    • “Meat supplies were maintained but killing took place in the abattoir surrounded by water to a depth of 2 feet”41
  • Facility was undergoing extensive alterations and improvements to beef killing floor38
    • When completed the killing floor would be one of the most modern in Australia38
    • Handle greater throughput38
    • OH & S issues improved38
  • Pigs killed at the facility had also increased on 1953.38
  • Queensland cattle herds had recovered from dry conditions during most of 1951.38
    • Channel Country was underutilised due to lack of quick and commercial transport for cattle38
    • Cattle were grown out to large framed animals to withstand long walking distances38
      • These animals were not the preferred types for killing38
      • UL introduced – Baby Beef grade38
        • significantly effected  producers to turn off younger animals with lighter frame38

1958

  • Daily processing capacity 987 head of cattle. (Pg 261)15

1991

  • Major flood year

2001

  • Employed 1,350 people18
  • Currently the second largest abattoir in Australia18
  • December. CMG lock out workers to force them to accept wage cuts, a six day production schedule and unlimited overtime22
    • Meat workers were forced back to work under a federal award that was $320 in wage cut for some workers22

2002

  • January. Management refused to open works18
  • March 2. Protesters march through the CBD of Rockhampton in support of the 1350 workers who lost their jobs when the plant closed in mid January.24
    • AMIEU called for mass protest24
      • AMIEU demanding re-opening and reinstatement of the workers without massive cuts to pay and conditions.24
      • supported by the Construction, Mining & Energy , Forestry & Manufacturing workers  unions24
  • April. Lakes Creek abattoir is locked into a bitter dispute over pay and conditions between the now owner Consolidated Meat Group (Kerry Packer) and the Australasian Meat Industry Employees’ Association.17
  • Facility will not be re-opening as early as planned17
  • May. Facility reopened but cut the workforce back to 70018
  • June. Plant was planned to be shut down entirely18
  • July 11. Workers begin a 5 day strike and re-establish a picket line outside the plant22
    • Strike is about production levels in the boning room and is part of a ongoing dispute of conditions of new work agreement22
  • July 30. Facility is offically closed.25
  • August. Negotiation had been occuring for an Enterprise bargain agreement for the last 8 months18
  • Consolidated Meat had come to agreement on Terms with Teys $1.2B joint venture to operate, Naracoote (SA), Beenleigh, Biloela and Innisfail (QLD)18
    • Deal to take effect in October18
    • Company had promised full severence pay but it would be at the lowest agreed rates18
    • Consolidated Meat had been awarded with $20M US Beef Quotas18
    • Governments Scheme based on 2001 rates, 40,000t known as the “Packer clause”18
      • Lakes Creek only produced 3,000t since June 200218
      • 2001 they had produced 49,000t18
      • quota flows into the merger entity18
      • Consolidated Meat will receive same quota in 2003 even though plant would be close.18
  • Abattoir is closed at this point in time 20/08/200219
    • It did open for short periods but had ongoing industrial disputes with protected industrial action begin taken19
    • Variety of owners of Lakes Creek plant had been unprofitable over the last decade19
  • ACCC investigate if merger of CMG and Teys would lead to reduced competition in terms of prices for cattle20
    • ACCC decide not to interven in proposed merger20
  • November. Jim Downey is appointed general manager at the plant21
    • Had been plant manager at Biloela21
    • Plant was still closed but undergoing major installations21
  • Drought was the single biggest factor now determining Lakes Creek operation21

2004

  • July. After nearly 2 years of being closed Lakes Creek re-opens25
    • 160 workers will start when the first kill takes place25
    • boning room will then begin employee numbers to be more than 300 in total25
      • Intention is to start with small production, settle the plant and make sure problems can be solved23
      • $1M in pay cheques will be injected into the community each month from the start up.23
    • Facility will gradually build towards a kill capacity of 2,500 head and employ 1,000 people.25
  • 6 weeks prior to opening Teys had been finalising plans to re-open and purchasing stock25
  • Profit margins for the processing sector currently as high as $150 a head25
    • Fallen due to a stronger Aussie dollar and the falling price of Japanese full sets.25
  • Originally the plant had been planned to open later in the year but successful negotiations with the AMIEU helped to bring the opening forward to July25
  • Re-opening was said not to be influenced by the risk of losing US export licences25
  • Lakes Creek had applied and received $660,000 – Under Regional Partnership grant.26
    • Assisted the facility to go back into business26
    • Funds were used to upgrade computer system and plumbing26
    • 2 other meatworks in the region, and operating didn’t receive the grant26
    • Labor criticised the Government for providing taxpayers money to a commercial venture that could give an unfair advantage26

2005

  • A shortage of skilled workers in Australia forces the company to look overseas29
    • People had been lost to the meatworks who have gone to the mining industry29
    • 60 vietnamese begin working at Lakes Creek29
    • Joining the 97 Brazilians already there29

2006

  • CMG implemented industry award27
    • Required to cut it’s 1,300 workers wages by 30% to remain competitive in the tightening beef export market27
    • CMG attempted to draw up new rosters that included27
      • night time and Saturday shifts without penalty rates27
        • Exceeded 38 hour cap27
    • Union workers voted against the new proposal and would only return to work on genuine award conditions.27

2009

  • December. Facility is considering job cuts over the next few weeks42
  • General Manager – Wasantha Mudannayake42
    • Reason for need to reduce jobs was livestock numbers had dropped due to overseas exports42
  • Biloela abattoir (QLD) – also owned and operated by Teys announced cutting of 40 foreign workers jobs42

2010

  • February.Tom Macquire – General Manager of corporate affairs for Teys Bros28
  • Lakes reopened after being closed for a short period following heavy rain.28
  • Currently employing 760 people28
  • Between April 2010 to February 2012 – Teys Employ 480 humanitarian refugees29
    • “Without humanitarian and skilled migrants Teys would find it very hard to continue production at sustainable levels at some sites, particularly in Rockhampton and Biloela”29
  • Since 1982 approximately 31 abattoirs have closed across Queensland30
    • Slaughter capacity had increased by 50%30
    • QLD meat processors forefront in adopting improved practices and technologies30
  • Last 2-3 years30
    • competition has come from restockers and live cattle exporters30
    • Lower export beef prices as a result of higher Australian dollar30
    • Export abattoirs have reduced throughput and cut shifts and the number of killing days.30
  • Major flood year

2011

  • July. Australian Competition & Consumer Commission (ACCC) don’t oppose Teys Bros & Cargill Beef Australia Merger42
    • View that the proposed merger would be unlikely to substantially lesson competition in any of the markets examined42
      • ‘fat’ cattle ready for slaughter42
      • acquisition of ‘feeder’ cattle destined for feedlots42
      • supply of processed beef to retailers and wholesalers42
  • Teys CEO – Brad Teys – says been 30 years since he’s seen cattle supply so tight44
    • Producer’s aren’t selling cattle44
      • due to poor prices44
        • forced the company to reduce kill days44
      • Rocky is working on 3 days a week kill44
  • September. Teys forms partnership with Cargill37
  • Federal Government Carbon tax legislation36
    • Creates a 2 tier system with those who generate more than 25,000 t of carbon each year to pay more36
      • Basic  costs would be $4 per head for all facilities36
    • Lakes Creek exceeds 25,000 threshold – would be liable to pay higher permit costs36
      • extra $2 head, adding up to extra $7M across Teys/Cargil enterprise.36
    • Abattoirs are energy-intensive business, Trade exposed, with export constituting majority of total production, narrow profit margins36
      • Carbon tax would disadvantage Australian facilities36
    • Government indicated there would be assistance for to introduce measures to reduce emissions to assit processors36

2012

  • Between April 2010 to February 2012 – Teys Employed 480 humanitarian refugees29
    • By February 306 were still actively employed29
  • December. AMIEU was investigating reports of working conditions of 100 workers who were part of the humanitarian program29

2013

  • March. Lakes Creek facility receives a grant from the Federal Government $4.17 for operational upgrades.31
    • Governments Clean Technology Food and Foundaries Investment Program31
    • Will assist Teys to improve competitiveness, local economy and environment.31
  • Upgrades begin of the waste water treatment plant39
    • involve building a new waste water treatment lagoons and installing a biogas boiler and handling equipment39
    • Methane emitted during the waste water treatment will be used to generate steam used at the facility39
    • reduce the facilities coal consumption by 30%39
    • Upgrade set to be completed by June 201539
    • Cost $16M39
  • Lakes Creek facility receives the Ministers Enterprise Award as part of the QLD state government’s annual Multicultural Awards for cultutal diversity10
    • Award recognises work and and volunteering efforts that develop strong, culturally diverse communities and promote awareness of the benefits of the cultural diversity in the state.10
  • Teys employed 4,500 across Australia10
    • Simply not enough local workers to operate the plants10
    • International workers were needed to fill the spaces10
  • In Rockhampton the mining boom left plants wth an employment shortfall10
    • Lakes Creek employs more than 1,000 people of 29 different nationalities10
    • Employ a significant number of humanitarian refugees and supports induction and training practices that assist new workers10
    • partnerships with settlement service providers and other groups in the community to employ and assist the workers.10

2014

  • June. Teys lobby government to repeal the Carbon tax11 Teys Media Release to repeal carbon tax
    • Manufacturers are closing down across the country due to unnecessary costs and charges on business” Tom Maguire Teys general manager of corporate affairs.11
    • countries Australia competes against do not have the burden of the carbon tax11
    • there is a direct link between the Carbon tax and competitiveness in the market place11
  • July. Rockhampton meatworks in the area employ more than 2,000 people1
    • Added more than $600M into the community1
  • Teys don’t support establishment of a live cattle export port at Port Alma (Rockhampton)1
  • Would be better for politicians to look at transport costs within Australia1.
    • currently costs $14M a year to rail product from Rockhampton and Biloela to the Port of Brisbane1
    • Development of a port at Rockhampton and Gladstone for shipment of containers would be better.1

unions 2012_edited-2Source The Bulletin. 01.12.2012

The Lakes Creek abattoir, Rockhampton. Queensland

2014

  • Teys is inducted into QLD business leaders hall of fame.32
  • Teys currently process 32,000 cattle per week across Australia32
    • Generates a turnover of $2.5B annually32

2015

  • February. Newly elected QLD Agriculture Minister – Bill Byrne said he “supported the live cattle trade under appropriate circumstances, but it would likely threaten the viability of the processors and value-adding of the local meat processing industry2
  • Cyclone Marcia hits Rockhampton 20/02/2015.3
    • 47,000 homes with no electricity3
    • Damage to buildings, bridges, destruction of crops and fencing.3
    • Flood levels were already high in Callide Valley and exacerbated by release of water from Callide Dam3
  • Lakes Creek abattoir suffers some minor damage to the roofing of the head office building3
  • Facility closed and wouldn’t likely operate for the rest of that week3
    • Plant and Equipment are OK3
    • most significant impact is no power, sewerage and water3
    • Until those services are restored the plant can’t operate3
    • Temporary amenities facilities had to be installed because of damage to existing ones9
  • Chilled and Frozen product was being maintained by generators3
  • Number of animals at the facility were getting water and fodder to ensure their welfare3
  • No kill occured on the day of the cyclone 20/02/2015 and wouldn’t for the rest of that week.4
  • Any cattle that were meant to be processed at Lakes Creek that week would be diverted to Biloela or Beenleigh.4
  • Cattle that had been at the plant at the time of the cyclone were returned to some producers at Teys cost5
    • Half were moved to other plants5
    • If the animals were stressed they would have lost weight and cut darker therefore Teys paid  a flat rate to the producers5
    • Temperatures climbed to 38 degrees with high humidity following the cyclone and some cattle suffered heat stress5
    • Heat stressed animals were not transported to care for their welfare5
  • Teys anticipate they would not be in the market for cattle all that week for Lakes Creek or Biloela4
  • Combination of their buying power not present in markets for the 3 abattoirs affected by the cyclone – Lakes Creek, Biloela and Rockhampton (JBS) accounted for 2,000 head per day4
  • Teys advise the plant will be closed longer than anticipated5
    • Many of the employees at the plant were overseas workers and not entitled to any government support5
    • Asbestos in exposed building material had slowed repairs at the site7
      • Asbestos was commonly used in older facilities7
      • Specialised workers wore plastic suits in 40 degree heat9
  • Facility likely to open 09/03/2015.6
  • Longreach cattle market sales had been cancelled due to the disruptions at the meatworks6
  • Markets still strong but there was congestion of cattle in the market6
  • QLD’s kill retracted to 75,275 head, down 7% as a direct consequence of the first weeks closure8
  • Where possible Teys was making forward payments to producers for cattle held up by the event9
  • Teys to restart the kill floor 18/03/2015 killing 1,000 head to increase to 1,6009

Brands_edited-1Source www.teysaust.com.au Product brand that are produced by Teys.

Sources Rockhampton – Lakes Creek #7

  1. ‘We’re not against live export but….’ QLD Country Life 17.07.2014
  2. ‘MP wary of live cattle trade at meatworks’ expense’ The Bulletin 21.02.2015
  3. ‘Disaster declaration expected today as Cyclone Marcia farm damage bill grows’ ABC Rural 24.02.2015
  4. ‘Power outages, structural damage from cyclone knock-out CQ plants’ Beef Central 23.02.2015
  5. ‘Asbestos closes JBS plant indefinitely’ 26.02.2015
  6. ‘Central QLD abattoirs closed for second week following Cyclone Marcia’ ABC Rural 27.02.2015
  7. ‘Rockhampton processing delays longer than expected, in wake of Cyclone Marcia’ Beef Central 27.02.2015
  8. ‘Weekly Kill: Cyclone impact reflected in lower tally’ Beef Central 03.03.2015
  9. ‘First Rocky Plant back to work Tomorrow’ Beef Central 17.03.2015
  10. ‘Lakes Creek plant earns QLD multi-cultural award’ Beef Central 13.09.2013
  11. ‘Meat Processor calls on new seante to stop games and repeal carbon tax’ Teys Media Release 03.06.2014
  12. Teys Website-facilities
  13. http://www.teysaust.com.au/about/
  14. ‘Public Abattoir Needed’ Courier-Mail 27.08.1938
  15. ‘Triumph in the Tropics’ 1959 Queensland Government
  16. Empire preference Ottawa Agreement
  17. ‘Lakes Creek abattoir re-opening plans delayed’ www.justfood.com 25.04.2002
  18. ‘Government rewards Packer for meatworks closure’ the Guardian 07.08.2002
  19. Parliament Hansard – Meat Industry Consultive structure and quota allocation 20.08.2002
  20. ACCC – Consolidated Meat Group and Teys Bros merger proposal
  21. ‘Drought biggest driver of Lakes Creek Opening’ QLD CL 14.11.2002
  22. ‘Lakes Creek Workers continue dispute’ www.wsws.org 13.07.2002
  23. ‘Lakes Creek abattoir to reopen’ ABC rural 13.07.2004
  24. ‘Thousands march to support meatworkers’ Green left 13.03.2002
  25. ‘Lakes Creek reopens Monday’ QLD CL 15.07.2004
  26. ‘Packer Firm given grant for abattoir’ SMH 19.02.2005
  27. ‘Union Avoidance Strategies in the meat processing/packing industry in Australia and the USA compared’ Jerrard, O’Leary
  28. ‘Lakes Creek has few lifelines’ the Bulletin 11.02.2010
  29. ‘Union investigates raw deal for refugees at abattoir’ The Bulletin 01.12.2012
  30. QLD Beef Industry Beef situation analysis 2010
  31. ‘Meatworks gets Federal Government grant’ Daily Mercury 05.03.2013
  32. 2014 Inductee – QLD business Leaders Hall of Fame
  33. History
  34. Great Barrier Reef – Environmental History, Ben Daley
  35. ‘To Feed a Nation – A history of Australian food science and technology ‘ Kieth Farrer. 2005
  36. ‘Carbon tax could cost $19M year for big three processors’ Brahman News. 2011
  37. ”Cargill & Teys merger good for the beef industry’ Meat Trade Daily. 22.05.2011
  38. ‘Lakes Creek meatworks had record year’ CQ Herald 06.01.1955
  39. ‘Methane for power at Teys Australia Lakes Creek meatworks’ The Bulletin 19.03.2014
  40. ‘Bully for our beef exports’ Courier Mail 17.07.2011
  41. AMIC Prime Cuts Newsletter 11.01.2011
  42. ‘Meatworks jobs may get the chop’ The Morning Bulletin 11.12.2009
  43. ACCC will not oppose Teys Bros & Cargill Beef Australia proposed merger
  44. ‘Cattle supply chokes’ ABC Rural 14.07.2011
  45. AUS-MEAT Accreditation Listing 29.12.2015

`

Roma #2 (Proposed)

 

July 2014. Maronoa council is seeking $75,000 to conduct a feasibility study into the establishment of an abattoir to process beef, sheep and goats. Proposal is reliant on a new airport at Toowoomba currently being built, rail link improvements that are proposed to Miles and extension of the rail from there to Roma.

Other Names

Current Operation

  •  Proposal.

Location

Owner

Operation

History

2014

  • July. Maronoa Regional Council seeking funding of $75,000 from state and Federal government to budget for ‘high level feasibility’ study into establishment of a beef, sheep and game meat abattoir at Roma.1
  • Wellcamp Airport at Toowoomba is being constructed and could open new opportunities to Asia, Middle East.1
  • Proposed upgrades to inland rail infrastructure.1
    • Rail  improvments to finish at Miles1
  • some private sector interest had been shown from a delegation from Asia1
  • Not looking to compete with Charleville (QLD) goat abattoir.1
    • Charleville abattoir currently operating at capacity with 80% of the feral goats coming from Surat Basin area.1
  • Council looking for ways to soften downturn in the economy that is predicted to hit once  the resource boom subsides.1

Sources

  1. ‘Roma ramps up abattoir study’ QLD Country Life 31.07.2014

Queensland abattoirs listed – regions

North Queensland

Ayr abattoir (QLD)

Small processor located 90km south of Townsville, currently in operation

Biboohra abattoir (QLD)

Historical abattoir closed in 1927, Also known as Baron works, located near Mareeba.

Owned by MJ Munro, operated as a slaughterhouse in the early days and then a cannery.

Bowen abattoir (QLD)

Located 230km south of Townsville on the QLD coast.Was in operation at 1919, went through fires, labour disputes and temporary closures. Purchased by AMH, the final owners and permanently closed in 1997.

Cairns abattoir (QLD)

Cairns (more commonly known as Queerah meatworks) was located in far north QLD received cattle from mainly north Australia, often by Barge from the NT and Normanton that had travelled from the gulf of Carpentaria in the 1960’s to 1975. Began to export in 1950’s closed in 1989 as part of the AMH rationalisation strategy of its abattoir capacity through the 1980’s.

Camooweal abattoir (QLD)

Located 190km northwest of Mt Isa, small processor currently operating that supplies own butchery for retail.

Canon Vale (QLD)

A small local processor currently in operation, located 70 km south of Bowen between Townsville and Mackay.

Cape River abattoir (QLD)

Located  south west of Townsville. Closed in 1986 due to the AMH  rationalisation strategy of its abattoirs capacity through the 1980’s.

Pentland abattoir (QLD)

Built prior to WWII, At one stage was the 2nd largest meatworks in Queensland. Last owned by AMH consortium, closed in 1989

Ross River abattoir (QLD)

Built in 1882, QLD meat export agency formed supplied contracts for supply of product to England. Plagued by industrial action its whole operating life most notably in 19919 when a violent clash between the unions and police occurred. Been through ownership receiver, beef price crash, strikes, droughts and market changes. Smorgons meat processors, last owner collapses in 1994, facility closed in 1995. Site now developed as a residential site with only the chimney still remaining as a historic site.

Tolga abattoir (QLD)

Small processor currently operating near Cairns

Townsville – Stuart

Owned by JBS. Large beef processor located in far north QLD

Tully abattoir (QLD)

Small processor currently operating between Cairns and Townsville

Weipa abattoir (QLD)

Small local processor

Central Queensland

Charleville abattoir – goat processor (Central QLD)

A goat processing facility that is currently operating located in central QLD. This facility exports all its production. Has had past problems of securing visa workers to ensure ability to process production. Floods have affected operations and government costs while plant has been closed at different periods.

Clermont abattoir (QLD)

Small local processor

Cloncurry #1 abattoir (QLD)

Small local processor currently operating

Cloncurry #2, proposed abattoir (QLD)

Proposal sponsored by DAFF 2012. Consider establishment of an abattoir at Cloncurry to process cattle from north west QLD and NT. Based on processing 100,000 heavy cattle per year, costing $49M to build not including land or government services. Marginal return expected on investment.

El Arish abattoir (QLD)

Located near Innisfail, a small processor that is currently operating.

Giru abattoir (QLD)

Domestic abattoir currently operating south of Townsville

Innisfail abattoir (QLD)

Owned by CMG then Teys, Hit by cyclone Larry in 2006, never to be reopened, equipment scrapped and auctioned off in 2011.

Mt Isa abattoir (QLD)

Built in the war years and closed in 1986

Southern Queensland

Beenleigh abattoir (QLD)

Large facility owned by Teys, currently in operation located south of Brisbane.Recently had a number of wage disputes. Invests heavily in new technology to optimise labour efficencies, currently operating 2 shifts processing 1,300 cattle per day

Caboolture abattoir (QLD)

Located in Queensland, one of only 2 abattoirs in Australia accredited for export of horse meat.

Dinmore abattoir (QLD)

The largest meat processing plant in Australia, currently operating and owned by JBS Australia. Located near Brisbane QLD.

Kilcoy abattoir (QLD)

Located northwest of Brisbane and primarily processes grainfed cattle. 4th largest abattoir in Australia, currently operating.

Oakey abattoir (QLD)

Located near Toowoomba, a large processing facility of mainly grain-fed beef, owned by Nippon. Currently processing up to 1300 animals per day. Has undergone significant upgrades to enable traceability for organic certification and assurances, with current work being carried out on methane gas collection. Problems in the past have been market fluctuations, unions and costs of production

Surat abattoir – Kangaroo processor (QLD)

Games meat abattoir located south of Roma. Processes Kangaroo. Started in mid 1980’s, possibly now closed due to floods, debt and costs of services to operate.

Queensland abattoirs listed – A-Z

These are the abattoirs currently listed on this blog, it is not complete of all actual operations at this point in time

Ayr abattoir (Nth QLD)

Beenleigh abattoir (Sth QLD).

Biboohra abattoir (Nth QLD)

Bowen abattoir (Nth QLD)

Caboolture Abattoir (QLD). Owned by Meramist Pty Ltd. A beef and horse processing facility.

Cairns abattoir ( Nth QLD)

Camooweal abattoir (Nth QLD)

Canon Vale (Nth QLD)

Cape River abattoir (Nth QLD)

Charleville abattoir – goat processor (Central QLD)

Clermont abattoir (Central QLD)

Cloncurry abattoir #1 (Central QLD)

Cloncurry #2. proposed abattoir (Central QLD)

Dinmore abattoir (Sth QLD)

El Arish (Nth QLD)

Giru abattoir (Nth QLD)

Innisfail abattoir (Nth QLD)

Kilcoy currently in operation

Mt Isa Owned by AMH, closed in 1986

Oakey abattoir (Sth QLD). Owned by Nippon. Currently operating.

Pentland (Cape River). Built originally prior to WWII, Eventually owned by AMH, closed 1989

Rockhampton – Lakes Creek Owned by Teys Australia, currently in operation.

Roma #2 (Proposed) Maronoa council seeking funding to conduct a feasibility study in 2014

Ross River Built in 1882, transformed from boiling down works to cannery to abattoir and meat processor. Finally owned by Smorgons closed 1995, Now demolished.

Surat (Wild game – kangaroo) Kangaroo processing facility, was in operation as at 2013

Tolga abattoir (QLD) 

Townsville Stuart  Owned by JBS, Currently in operation

Tully abattoir (Nth QLD)

Weipa Was in operation as at 2012

 

 

 

 

 

Oakey

Located near Toowoomba, a large processing facility of mainly grain-fed beef, owned by NH Foods (Japanese origins). Currently processing up to 1300 animals per day. Has undergone significant upgrades to enable traceability for organic certification and assurances, with current work being carried out on methane gas collection. Problems in the past have been market fluctuations, unions and costs of production. Includes short history of early days of the Japanese/Australian meat trade markets and general QLD market conditions affecting processing

Other Names

  • Toowoomba abattoir
  • Nippon Meat Packers name changed to NH Foods Australia
  • Oakey abattoir
  • Oakey Beef Exports

Current Operation

  • Aus Meat Accreditation registration dated 29/12/2015 #558 – Oakey Beef Exports Pty Ltd.3
    • registered as a Beef, Offal export facility.3
  • Direct employment enquiries to www.nmpa.com.au

Location   

  • Located north west of Toowoomba on QLD Darling downs5

Australia Oakey

Oakey

Source Hema Maps – Australia Truckies atlas.

Owner

  • Nippon Meat Packers1
    • Subsidiary of a Japanese Multinational1
    • Nippon meat packers incorporated 19781

products_edited-1Source Nippon Meat Packers Australia interactive beef products

This is a great diagram that is able to be clicked on in the Nippon website and illustrates where the various cuts of beef and offal are located in the animals bodies

Operation 

  •  Nippon currently own 3 operating abattoirs in Australia,
  • Nippon owned Bowen (QLD) which they closed in 1997
  • Combined processing capacity 2,700 cattle day2.
    • also owns and operates a feedlot1  at Whyalla5 and
      • 3 beef farms1
        • At 2014 land in Texas QLD and Tasmania on King Island5
      • 3 tanneries1
        • Oakey Blue tan factory closed 20127
      • piggery1
        • Piggery assets sold off2
    • Processes predominently grain-fed cattle1
      • 100 to 300+ day5
      • Processing mainly British and European cross steers5
    • All plants are certified organic to process and slaughter.1
    • Sells product  under subsidiary company1
      • Beef Producers Australia Pty Ltd – Sells approximately 20% of Oakey product, marketed domestically1
      • Nippon Meat Packers Australia Ltd (Exporter)1
      • third of product is exported to Japan2
    • Sells products under labels1
      • Nippon1
      • Australian premium beef1
      • Wingham gold1
      • Borthwicks1
    • Vertically integrated supply chain that allows traceabilty from animal’s property of birth through to end user5
      • traceability includes details on animal, workers, defects, yield and volume data5
    • Fully integrated slaughtering, fabricating, chilling, freezing and rendering facility.5

picture_edited-1Source – ‘Productivity a bone of contention in abattoir strike’ ABC Rural. 01.05.2012.
Oakey abattoir facility

brands_edited-1brands #2_edited-1Source. www.nmpa.com.au
Various branded products sold from the Oakey facility

Historical and current meatworks, canneries and abattoirs located in Australia can be viewed at;

Australian abattoirs inactive map

abattoirs_edited-1

History of Oakey meat processing facility

Authors Note – As Nippon Meat Packers, now NH Foods is Japanese owned firm I have included some information that is in relation to Australia/Japanese Beef  early trading. I don’t know how directly relevant it would have been to the Oakey abattoir.

1956

  • Oakey Facility established.5

1968

  • Japanese Beef Trade
    • January. Trial shipment of chilled 1500lbs (680kg) meat vacuum packed by Borthwicks from the Murarrie plant on the Brisbane river shipped to Yokohama, Japan (Pg 72).28
      • Product arrived 3 weeks later(Pg 72)
    • Requirements by Japanese were placed on frozen beef, required frozen temperatures at all points of the supply chain, even to small retail outlets (Pg72)
      • Logisitically this was extremely difficult as frozen meat had to be defrosted in advance for retail sale (Pg 72)
      • Chilled beef was much easier to handle (Pg 72)

1969

  • Japanese Beef Trade
    • Market research conducted by Borthwicks identified consumer market preference (Pg73).28
      • 15% high quality meat
        • Significant opportunity for Australia to provide high quality meat
      • 40% middle class meat
      • 45% was low quality
        • Australian cattle were meeting this demand in canned meats, curries and low priced product
    • The First containerised vessels are used in Australia opening up new opportunities to send vaccum packed beef primals to Japan (Pg71).28
  • Growing feedlot industry was developing to cater for the Japanese trade (of which Japan interests had no equity) (Pg 81).28
  • Designated store project in Japan started to differentiate the Australian product at retail level (Pg 84).28
    • by 1971 Japan had 740 Australian meat designated stores.

1970

  • Japanese Beef Trade
    • First full container of cryovac packaged chilled beef primals is shipped to Japan from the Borthwicks Brooklyn plant in Victoria (Pg 72).28
      • One of the first containers of any export commodity to Japan from Australia
      • Initial shipments of the packaged meat was in high quality wooden boxes, with each lid having a printed message about the contents
        • Card that placed inside the box, was protected from moisture damage, also provided a great deal of factual information about the product, it’s shelf life and that it had been chilled, not frozen.
        • Japanese retailers valued the box, some for fuel but also as reliable evidence to customers that this was a superior product
        • Wooden boxes later replaced by reinforced cardboard
        • The boxes and presentation made an everlasting impression and established reputation as Australian beef being of the best quality

1970

  • Alot of work is done at Oakey with Lindgren packaging  to commercialise and develope meat vacuum packs (Pg 74).28
    • Australia world leader in this development

1971

  • Japanese Beef Trade
    • First QLD shipments of beef to Japan occur from QLD (Pg 74).28

1974

  • Oil Crisis occurs (Pg 74).28
    • Oil embargoes (restriction of supply) had occured in 1973 by members of OPEC (the organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries)
      • economic fallout proved catestrophic for the red meat industry
      • Oil dependent economies feared the effects of the oil restriction and closed their countries to imported beef to protect their currency and own livestock growers (Pg 81)
  • Japanese beef markets are closed (Pg 74).28
    • Australia had a large beef herd at the time
      • Australia and the US sold off their beef herds
      • Prices plummeted from 1974 prices of $350/hd to $40/hd in 1976
      • Australia had limited export markets and therefore sold into the US, producers there were already liquidating
        • US beef and mutton prices crashed, taking the industry with them
        • European beef mountain was created – EU stockpiled beef which they later sold into the early 1980’s furthur supressing prices world wide
  • Australian red meat exports fell by 43% in 1973/74 (Pg 81).28

1975

  • Japanese beef markets re-open (Pg 74).28
    • Much of the investment in chilled technology and production systems had been lost
    • Frozen sector sales to Japan recovered better but chilled took much longer
  • Feedlots that had previously catered to Japanese markets had collapsed with big losses. This inhibited investment into the future due to mistrust of the stability of the market.(Pg 81).28
    • rebuilding of the trade was dependent on Japanese importers investing in the feedlots so that they shared some of the risk

1976

  • Australian National cattle herd reached an all time high of 33.4M head (Pg 81).28

1978

  • Australian slaughter peaks at 10.8M head (Pg 81).28
  • Most abattoirs, both domestic and export are running at capacity (Pg 81).28
    • not uncommon for cheaper cuts to be rendered rather than sold as meat
  • Company of Nippon Meat Packers Australia Pty Ltd is established.29

 

 1980’s

  • Australian cattle herd has fallen by 11M head (Pg 82).28
  • Australian Sheep herd dropped from 174M in 1970 to 135M in 1985 (Pg 82).28
  • Many abattoirs and meatworks couldn’t source enough cattle to remain viable (Pg 82).28
  • Japanese beef market.28
    • Prior to 1960’s Japan’s main source of animal protein was whale meat and the mainstay of school lunch program (Pg 84)
      • Whale meat accounted for 25% of Japanese meat consumption (Pg 84)
      • Japan enabled a number of sub quota’s for red meat industry into which Australia was able to provide product (Pg 84)
        • supplied various sectors and agencies
          • School lunch program
          • Hotal quota
          • airline quota

1981

  • August. ‘Meat substitution scandal’ occurs in Australia.(Pg 82).28
    • Pet food grade meats, donkey, kanagroo and others were found in shipments to the US. Meat was being transported from northern parts of Australia to southern Australia, reboxed and repackaged and exported.28
    • Leads to Royal commission in the Australian Meat Industry.28
    • Profoundly damages Australia’s meat export reputation.28
    • leads to the evolution of AUS-MEAT.28
      • costs of regulation closed many export abattoirs.28
      • The US significantly step up standards of requirements for meat into the US under the USDA.28

1987

  • Nippon purchase Oakey abattoir1
    • Nippon began in Japan in 1942, establishing the Tokushima meat processing factory, producing ham and sausages (Pg 86).28
      • when supplies of pork were scarce, would substitute other proteins.28
        • rabbit, whale.28
        • By 1960 mutton was found to be a good substitute, which it began to source from Australia.28
        • Company changed its name to Nippon meat packers in 1963 and entered into business with US Swift 1969.28
          • Swift already had connections in Australian meat processing at that time.28
        • Purchase of Oakey was in direct response to Japanese beef market liberalisation.28

1987 purchased Oakey_edited-1

Oakey abattoir. Source www.nipponham.co.jp

  • Japan beef markets are liberalised(Pg 82).28
    • Lead to removal of import quotas and reduction in import tariffs.28
    • Gave companies in Japan opportunity and incentive to expand into meat importation, some who had been restricted prior to the liberalisation (Pg 85).28
    • Previously tenders had protected certain trading houses.28
    • Significant investment had occured in fully integrated supply chains into Japan to realise market potential and commitment to the Japanese market irrespective of market conditions.28Japanese export markets 001

Source World on a Plate –  A history of meat processing in Australia. Stephen Martyn. (Pg 83)

  • US industry analysts thought the US would be the major benefactor of Japanese markets opening up (Pg 85).28
    • US underestimated Australia as it (Australia) had previously only supplied mainly meat from grassfed stock.28
    • Assumed Australia would be confined to commodity meat supplies rather than the premium markets.28
    • Authors note; Significant investment occurred in Australian feedlots at this time to enable grainfed custom feeding of animals suited to specific Japanese meat markets.28
  • Nippon purchase Whyalla feedlot near Texas, NSW.67
    • already a 3,000 head feedlot.67
      • extensively developed latter in 1990.67

1989

  • Nippon also purchase the AMH plants at.28
    • Mackay (QLD) and
    • Bowen (QLD).
      • closed 1996 as part of capacity rationalisation.28
    • Operated boning room through subsidiary Namoi Valley Beef
      • Gunnedah abattoir (NSW)
        • Council operated, service kill facility
        • Closed 1997
      • Mudgee abattoir (NSW)
      • At the time was operated by council as a service kill facility,
        • Had massive debt and went into receivership.28
        • Later purchased by Flectcher’s in 2003, still in operation
    • Nippon is sensitive to it’s position as a foreign owned, non-Anglo company in Australia (Pg 86).28
      • keeps a low profile.28
      • Makes most asset purchases as joint ventures.28

 

1990

  • Nippon develop the Whyalla feedlot – Oakeys Holdings.28
    • Nippon website says they purchased this site in 1988.29

1988 whyalla feedlot_edited-1

Whyalla Feedlot. Source www.nipponham.co.jp

  • Whyalla feedlot is developed to a unprecedented scale.67
    • previously been a 3,000 head feedlot.67
    • Now scaled to 50,000 head.67
      • Later extended to 56,000 head.67
    • largest Australian single feedlot site.67
      • led the way in ‘US scale commercial feedlot operations.67
    • Australia’s largest feedmilling infrastructure.67
      • 8  18 x 36 inch roller mills.67
      • feeding 750 tonnes  mostly barley based mix a day.67
      • 5 delivery trucks – 4 in use at any one time.67
      • yard can store 100,000t grain.67
      • silos can store 26,000t.67
      • most hay produced on farm.67
      • corn is contracted silage.67
    • Site is licencsed to 75,000 head.67
    • Holds 100% Nippon owned cattle.67
      • 50% straight Angus.67
    • Cattle sourced from QLD, NSW, Victoria, and Central Australia.67
    • Typically induct 3,000 head a week.67
      • similar numbers dispatched.67
      • animals pre-vaccinated before induction.67
      • animals monitored individually.67
    • Yards.67
      • every pen has shade.67
        • unique slattered shadecolth system.67
    • Initially feeding was focused on Japanese markets.67
      • mid to longfed progam out to 300 days.67
        • heavily reliant on marbling-oriented British breeds
      • Now feeds large variety.67
      • most cattle are 120 – 150 day.67
      • Change in feeding length changed annual turnover.67
        • 2014 calendar year turned out 132,000 head.67
        • 2003 turned out 93,000.67
    • Vertical integration of abattoir /feedlots. Not focused soley on Japanase markets and has been versatile in supply to international and domestic markets.67
  • ABARES report – Foreign Investment and Australian Agriculture

8. ABARES Nov 2011_edited-1

Proportion of cattle slaughtered by ownership of abattoirs 1990
Source ABARES foreign ownership 2011 Pg 31

1991

  • 77 Beef export Abattoirs are in operation in Australia at this time.54
    • 27 have some level of foreign ownership.54
    • Ownership dominated by Japan, UK and the US.54

1993

  • Acquire Rochel feedlot in NSW (3000 head) to assist research into cattle performance.28

1994

  • Nippon purchase (Pg 86).28 Wingham (NSW)
    • Wingham is a major beef exports facility.28
    • Tomen sells it’s interest to Nippon.28
      • Major shareholder in Anvic Meat Exports Pty Ltd.28

1997

  • Nippon has invested $200M in abattoirs and feedlots over the previous decade(Pg 86).28
    • 3rd Largest meat processor in Australia.28
    • Exporting to 34 countries.28

NH foods Oakey export_edited-1

NH Foods holdings. Source www.nh-foods.com.au – General Information accessed 21/12/2015

1999

  • Spent $2M in marketing new Barley beef brand to Japanese customers1
  • Nominal capacity estimated at 50,000 head as per 50 weeks3

2001

  • Nippon establish leather wet blue tannery near abattoir to process Oakey hides and from other facilities, including competitors7
    • Prior to GFC hides are worth $110 each7

2003

  • July.Jondaryan Shire Council approve the project 08/07/2003.31
  • Started upgrades to plant and facilities, included new boning room, new slaughter room and a new traceability and control system1
    • Upgrade takes until about 20061
    • Slaughter capacity of approximately 1200 cattle per day1
    • Create 700 new jobs.31
      • Upgrade proposing to lift capacity to 2,000 head a day.31
      • Make Oakey the 2nd largest abattoir in QLD.31
      • Upgrades to take place over 5 years.31
  • $46M expansion using Marel meat equipment4,
    • New boning system includes 4 flowlines to take beef quarters to 96 individual workstations where beef is boned and trimmed before being vacuum packed for further processing in Japan4
    • Old system was meat was cut on tables now it is hanging in front of worker and is more efficent and easier4
    • created 500 new jobs4
    • make Oakey the 4th or 5th largest beef abattoir in Australia and 3rd largest in QLD4
    • New system expected to have effective life of 20 years with maintenance.4
    • key point of Marel system was the traceability, particularly important in latter years when BSE closed market access for US  to Japan and allowed access by Nippon to those markets4
  • “Marel traceability/accountability system …proved to be a magnificant investment, despite its detractors at the time” Pat Gleeson, Oakey general manager. 10.03.2014

2004

  • January. Construction offically begins at the abattoir for the upgrades.32
    • Workforce will lift from 500 to 1,100 workers.32
    • processing and export earnings capacity is to double.32
    • First stage of the project is expected to be completed by the end of 2004.32
  • Expansion of the meatworks will be ready when the industry turns around.32
  • “So even though times are tough at the moment, now is the right time to build rather than waiting until good times and then rushing around trying to build, so it’s a confidence thing at the moment” Jim Vick, Oakey Managing Director.32
  • September. Oakey Ergon Energy power substation causes black out 5.5 hrs, Caused shut down of the abattoir for that time.33
    • Third power failure in 3 weeks.33
    • New $7M power facility will be built.33
  • December. Abattoir extenstions $46M.34
    • Offically opened 03.12.2004.34
    • Facility will use NLIS, seen as controversial at the time.34
      • system guarantees quality, consistency and traceability.34
      • Ensures importers product is high-quality and disease free.34
    • Oakey expansion will mean 500 new jobs over the next 3 years
      • increase of capacity to 2,000 head a day by 2007.34

2005

  • Nippon form a strategic allience with OBE Beef – Australia’s largest supplier of certified organic meat1
    • Plan to export meat to UK and Central Europe under ‘Borthwicks’ organic brand1
  • Strong demand for export product key factor in gains in net profit after tax gains of 60%, with 2005/06 NPAT $21.5M from earnings of $875M (All Nippon meat Packers financial performance combined)1
  • Nippon upgrade hide tanning facility extensively to world-class quality – facility now has capacity to process 20,000 hides a week.7
  • Significant regions of drought across QLD.

QLD Drought 2003_2005_edited-1

Queensland drought situation 2003 – 2005 www.longpaddock.qld.gov.au

2006

  • Sales revenue increased but net loss occured for year (Financial year ending June) $23.2M1
    • Large increase in administration costs of $30M1
    • Increase in wages due to increased employment1
  • Nippon Meat Packers Australia produce 5.9% of Australia’s red meat production in 2006.54
    • 3 abattoirs in operation.54

2007

  • Australian subsidiary earnings struggled in the first half of 2006/2007 due to higher cattle prices , low prices in Japan and high Australian dollar, earnings recovered in early part of 20071
  • Aim to increase profitability by processing more grain fed cattle1
  • Costs for raw materials increased for higher grain and oil prices1
  • May. Oakey shire water plant implement $6M upgrades to connect and treat bore water supplied to businesses in Oakey.35
    • Oakey residents, Oakey abattoir, Army Aviation centre, Jondaryan township.35
  • June. Abattoir is able to deliver system that is able to trace each piece of meat back to property of birth.36
    • system provides vital defect and yield feedback.36
  • Processing 1,000 cattle per shift.36
    • Mostly from the feedlot in Texas.36

2008

  • March.Queensland rail (QR) deem the rail siding west of the works requires upgrading and is currently unsafe.6
    • QR agree with Oakey management to run cattle train to Dalby, abattoir would pay for additional freight to Oakey.6
      • Allows Oakey to access and bid for cattle on Northern and Western district properties6
  • Sales revenue fallen by average of 1.2% in real terms, in contrast industry revenue estimated to have grown at marginal rates in real terms1
  • Nippon launches a large scale reform of Australian business to improve earnings in 2007/20081
    • Involved cutting costs in cattle feeding, processing plants and leather business1
    • potentially reorganising plants1
    • possible closure of piggery1
    • revenue affected by high Australian dollar and weak demand for beef in Japan1
  • Withdraws from restaurant operations and Hog production and sells idle farmland2
  • August. Sulphuric acid leak occurs from a tank, spilling 2,000 lt.37
    • no injuries occur.37
  • November. Nearly all 730 staff are stood down due to a shortage of cattle.38
    • One day, 11/11/2008, staff not paid.38
    • Management not alarmed.38
      • Couldn’t get enough stock for full weeks kill.38
      • Time of year was traditionally slower as was crop harvest period.38
  • Global finanical crisis is also causing a reduction in export sales.38
    • Korea and Russia slowed significantly.38
    • Difficult selling to those overseas countries where the money was difficult to obtain.38
    • Managing Director Howard Halter said Oakey was a lot better positioned to handle current climate than processors in Brisbane and North QLD.38

2009

  • Plans to double processing capacity to 2,000 cattle per day by moving to a two shift system1
    • Employing 750 people1
  • Plant certified for halal production and now exports to halal markets2
    • mostly Middle Eastern markets.30
  • Sluggish growth and weak export demand due to global economic downturn2
  • December. Queensland Rail (QR) informs Oakey they will not stop at Dalby, only unloading the cattle at ‘End of the line’ – Brisbane6
    • Oakey abattoir would have to truck cattle back from Brisbane 200km, from a tick zone and up the range to Oakey6
    • Dalby to Oakey is 50km6
    • Brisbane to Oakey is 200km6
  • Comparative road frieght to rail from Quilpie to Oakey6
    • Road $1.45/km 805km equals $1,167.25 /deck or $51,359 for 44 deck consignment6
    • Rail $1.03 /km 805km equals $829.15 /deck or $36,482.6o for 44 deck consignment6
      • Difference $14,876.40 over 44 decks6
      • QR were now making it uncompetitive if extra freight is incurred from Brisbane6
      • Situation of competitiveness would worsen if the abattoir can’t access channel country cattle.6

2007_2009_edited-1

Queensland drought situation 2007 – 2009 www.longpaddock.qld.gov.au

2010

  • August. 2 employees  sacked for workplace bullying.39
    • Incident occured in July.39
    • Became a Fair Workplace Investigation.39
    • Worker bullied had supported speeding up the chain to 157 beasts, others wanted slowed to 155 beasts
  • October. Worker who claimed workplace bully and led to 3 people being sacked is now centre of a workplace bully allegation himself.40

IBIS Jun 2010_edited-1

Major Companies in the Australian Red meat processing industry

Source IBIS world June 2010

2011

  • January. Devastating floods across Central and southern QLD and large parts of NSW and Victoria.48
    • affected slaughter numbers to abattoirs.48
  • March. Pittsworth abattoir -Located 30km south of Oakey closes
    • Regional abattoir that did private kills for farmers and supplied local butchers.41
      • employed 35 people.41
      • Lack of available stock and persistent rain were the reasons for closure.41
  • June. 3 workers  in July 2010 incident reinstated.42
    • ‘Booing, mooing and barking” was part of the workplace’s culture.42
    • Video footage used as evidence.42
    • Oakey abattoir ordered to reinstate and pay undiclosed sum for renumeration to one man, another man had withdrawn unfair dismissal claim.42
  • July.National slaughter rates decline 5%.43
    • Australian currency pressures.43
      • A$ is now above US108c.43
      • economic news out of US could send currency even higher.43
      • higher A$ would cripple Australia’s already limited price competitiveness for beef in international markets.43
    • QLD which does approximately half of Australia’s processing capacity.43
      • Down 8% from the previous week.43
      • lowest kill recorded in QLD in July for past decade.43
      • Down 21% on same period last year.43
      • Significant number of QLD plants only killing 3-4 days.43
    • listless export beef demand.43
    • Meat processing and export is low-margin business due to.43
      • Import duties.43
        • Indonesia 9%.43
        • Korea 40%.43
        • Japan 38%.43
      • New AQIS charges on meat inspection would add millions to processor costs.43
    • Was currently a big build up of meat in cold stores due to difficulty in selling into sluggish markets, Japan and the US.43
  • August. Top chefs tour the abattoir as part of a south east QLD tour.44
  • Cattle are in short supply, 2008 & 2009 had been drought periods.45
    • with seasonal pressure lifting producers are retaining females for breeding.45
    • Period of drought that lasted 10 to 15 years.45
    • “We’re paying for the numbers of store cattle that were killed in the droughts up until 3 years ago” Kurt Wockner, Oakey Livestock manager.45
  • Expected diversion of northern cattle displaced by the Indonesia live export ban won’t come to the processors until April 2012.45
  • September. Oakey abattoir hold an open day for active suppliers.46
    • Inspection tour of the plant.46
    • Boning room – features four production lines.46
      • provides individual animal traceability from the animal to the vacuum -packed primals in cartons.46
      • Oakey processing 1,100 per day single shift.46
  • Change in production emphasis from primarily being dedicated grainfed plant to much broader range of cattle.46
    • grassfed export steers.46
    • grain and grassfed yearlings.46
    • bulls.46
    • cows and.46
    • high quality EU grain and grassfed.46
  • A$ now us103c.47
  • Some QLD southern plants operated only 6 shifts for the week down from 10.47
  • General shortage of killable cattle across Eastern Australia.47
    • AACo lifted 4,000 from Brunette downs and 2,000 from Anthony’s Lagoon to processors.47
    • Weights for cattle are expected to be heavier later in the spring and early summer 20-30kg above normal.47
  • November. ABARES foreign ownership 2011 report is released

7. ABARES Nov 2011_edited-1

Red Meat throughput Australian abattoirs, Foreign and Australian owned 2011 Source ABARES foreign ownership 2011 Pg 29

2012

  • January. Nippon close down ‘New Wave Leather wet blue tannery’  located at Oakey site.7
    • High Australian dollar and increases in direct processing costs forced tannery to cease operations
    • facility had capacity to process 20,000 hides per week7
    • Employed 38 full time and 15 casual staff7
    • was leading blue tannery supplying value-added blued hides to the international market7
    • Nippon deny had tried to sell business outright and may reconsider re-opening.7
    • Hides from the Oakey abattoir would now be salted and exported raw to China, where labour and other input costs and regulatory pressures are low.7
    • Hides currently worth $457
      • Prior to GFC $1107
      • 2009 $10 and less7
  • Japan export market has stagnated and Nippon shift focus to emerging markets in Russia and the Middle East2
  • Strength of Australian dollar is declining and increased competition from US will make breaking into new markets more difficult2
    • also competition from Brazil increasing2
  • Oakey commence season after traditional Christmas/New year season in 2nd week of January.48
    • on a reduced kill.48
  • ABARES release a report into foreign ownership in the red meat processing sector See Nov 2011.49
    • report ‘underwhelming’ adding nothing to current industry knowledge.49
  • Australian dollar has continued to climb US106c.50
  • Export demand North Asia and Russia remains subdued.50
    • current state of export market ‘woful’.50
    • some strengthening in the grinding meat market.50
  • Beef stocks held by processors are starting to decline.50
  • Many QLD processors were forced to close due to rain,.50
    • record 24 hour and 48 hour rainfalls in parts of QLD.50
  • Oakey plan to close for 1 day 03/02/2012.50
  • April.
  • AMIEU give notice 19/04/2012 of 2 hour protected industrial action to occur on 27/04/20128
    • AMIEU gave notice 27/04/2012 to Oakey management work stoppage to occur 27/04/2012 ending Friday 04/05/20128
      • originally planned a 2 hour protective action for Friday only, “The company responded to that by progressively locking out workers indefinitely, workers responded with this week-long protected industrial action” Brian Crawford, AMIEU QLD branch secretary10
    • AMIEU advised  that further 24 hour stoppage to occur 04/05/2012, work to resume Tuesday 08/05/2012 as Monday was a public holiday8
    • 600 workers on strike, not to be paid during action9
    • Management response  cease processing Friday 27/04/2012.8
    • AMIEU refused to allow members to bone out Thursday 26/04/2012.8
      • management conducted process themselves8
      • May 7 article claims 400 carcases still hanging in chillers11
  • Oakey and Management been in negotiations since May to finalise new Enterprise bargaining Agreement8
    • Oakey require productivity offsets required for plant to remain competitive with domestic and internation markets, current unfavourable trading conditions particularly in grain-fed business could not be sustained.8
    • Members of AMIEU not happy about productivity push, which includes increasing the speed of the boning room chain9
    • Workers want compulsory Saturday work to be wiped from the contract10
    • AMIEU want 4% wage increase, but won’t accept staff work faster12
      • management want to increase chain speed in boning room by 15 minutes12
      • other places are working faster and they have agreements with AMIEU that are signed and certified12
  • Workforce would prolong strike if agreement was not reached10
  • The shutdown would hurt local businesses, retail had not been great in the region.51
  • May. Toowoomba’s Labour day celebrations, abattoir workers among meatworkers marching with signs that read “Scab labour will not be tolerated”, non-unionised salary workers would be bought in.11
  • AMIEU – Main issue is the chain speed in the boning room and complusory Saturday work.52
    • Workers walked off 27/04/2012.52
    • Scheduled to resume 03/05/2012.52
      • Now they won’t go back until 04/05/2012 (Saturday?).52
  • May 4. Protected action scheduled to finish today.53
    • AMIEU has not been told when operations can resume.53
  • AMIEU say will not return to work at earliest 08/05/2012 unless an agreement is reached.55
  • 10 day strike led by AMIEU ended midnight 9th May. Management had continued to lock workers out with the AMIEU waiting to be advised of how long it would continue13
  • May 11th AMIEU Brian Crawford currently in talks with Oakey management Pat Gleeson.14
  • Management continues to lock staff out, even though strike ended, will not open until an agreement is reached.56
  • May 20, Oakey management release statement “..the decision of the workers to continue to strike is regrettable, but the company intends to continue to  negotiate in good faith to bring about an acceptable outcome that addresses the fundamental issue of productivity with its workforce”16
  • May 21. Workers return to work, compromise on wage increase and chain speed reached.17
    • 4% pay increase.58
  • Members of Construction forestry Mining and Energy union from Acland Coal mine have encouraged and supported AMIEU workers since start of strike14
  • Local businessmen say protracted action at the abattoir has hurt local retail trading as they rely on everyday people to walk into stores.15
  • Businesses have felt the impact from the strike and will continue to for couple weeks after work restarts.57
  • EBA negotiations had been occurring for 18 months11

Industrial dispute Oakey. 2012_edited-1

Industrial Dispute Calendar – Oakey Beef Exports 2012.

  • current high Australian dollar is particularly damaging to manufacturers and exporters alike.8
  • Boning room supervisor Bob Costello wins prestigious manufacturing industry-wide award.59
    • Manufacturing Student of the year.59
    • Nominated by the employer.59
    • Diploma of meat processing course.59
    • Bob Costello made major contribution to improving plant efficiency.59
      • saved thousands of dollars worth in daily savings to the facility.59
      • based on preliminary work on the carcase while hot to improve yield and reduce waste.59
      • Worked in the industry for 28 years, working his way through different levels of processing.59
  • November. Major southeast QLD processor say they have ample cattle supply in coming weeks to meet current requirements and international demand.62
    • Seasonal conditions are deteriorating.62
    • Large areas have had bushfires.62
  • Superstorm – Hurricane Sandy hit the US east coast and affected some imports.62
    • damage to US processing facilities and infrastructure was significant.62
    • Port of Philiadelphia (largest port of entry for beef) is open.62

 Profit Margins_edited-1Nippon Meat Packers Revenue Source IBIS world 2010,2013

revenue_edited-1

Nippon Meat Packers Profit Earnings Source IBIS world 2010,2013

2013

  • March. AACo conduct service kills for it’s brand products of 1824 and Waygu beef are being conducted at Oakey and Toowoomba (QLD) JBS Beef city.63
    • AACo don’t harvest and retain all of the material from the animal.63
      • processor (Not AAC0)keeps red & white offals, blood products, meat and bonemeal and tallow.63
      • AACo are in direct competition with major processors JBS, Teys/Cargill and Nippon in brand products.63
      • AACo began building their abattoir near Darwin.63 Livingstone abattoir (NT)
  • September. Pasturefed Cattle Assurance System (PCAS) registration process has begun at Oakey plant with information for suppliers to follow to establish PCAS certified grassfed supply chain18
    • cost of audit was likely to be point of resistance early in PCAS development18
  • Companies industry related revenue estimated to have contracted by 1.7% due to Australian chilled beef prices remaining flat over 2008/09 and 2009/102
    • weak export demand due to global economic downturn2
  • Oakey plant had killed same number of cattle in 2013 as it did for entire period of 2012 season.19
    • Daily kill 1200-1300 head are 30% above last year at the same time19
    • Kill weights are reflected by the drought.19
      • Average carcase weights back 20-25kg compared to 2012, due to lighter average weight of steers and significantly higher proportion of female slaughter19
    • In general Eastern states kill tally recorded by the National Livestock reporting services up 15% on same week last year19
  • October. Queensland abattoirs being charged up to $27,000 a month through a religious levy on meat exports in Jakarta to raise money for Islamic schools and mosques20
    • Scandel has stopped QLD halal meat exports to Indonesia, abattoir operators boycott expensive Halal certifiers endorsed by the Indonesian council of Ulama (MUI)20
    • certifiers must donate a share of their revenue to mosques and Islamic schools.20
    • Australian Halal food services (AHFS)was charging quarter of other certified endorser – was suspended by MUI for engaging in unfair competition that could weaken halal certification20
    • DAFF have no control over approvals for religious certifiers.20
    • Oakey relied on AHFS for certification and were now unable to sell Halal meat in Indonesia21
      • Indonesia was an important market for Oakey product21

2014

  • Nippon Meat Packers Pty Ltd changes name to NH Foods.29

Logo NH oakey exports_edited-1

NH Foods Australia Logo Source  www.nh-foods.com.au

  • January. Lack of rain and failure of the northern monsoon has left many areas critically short of feed in western and southern QLD.64
    • Dry areas extending across northern NSW.64
    • critical decision time for drought impacted producers.64
    • One processor states its is the worst start-of-season outlook in 35 years of business.64
    • first quarter of 2014 looking to be period of extreme high cattle turnoff.64
    • Some large processors not booking prices only kill slots.64
      • due to uncertainty over cattle supply.64
      • high placement rate in feedlots late in 2013.64
      • catch up of grain-fed kills due to seasonal break.64
  • February. Forecast of very difficult next 12 months due to supply of animals if drought breaking rains received.24
    • Herds rebuild and producers retain cattle24
    • Plans are to maximise numbers of cattle on feed which will help to insulate from predicted shortages in 3 months.24
  • currently employing 700 people24
  • upgraded trucking and spelling facility at abattoir that can hold 1000 head on feed in seperate area from plant operations24
  • Installation of Covered high rate Anaerobic (COHRAL) lagoon to extract green energy biogas from waster water streams to replace millions of dollars worth of natural gas currently consumed22
    • Uses concentrated anaerobic bacteria to digest 70% of organic matter of high chemical oxygen demand to produce effluent of far higher quality than typical open lagoons22
      • collect 6000 cubic metres of methane each day, calculated to produce a saving of about 50,000 gigajoules of natural gas used in boilers each year23
      • methane will produce 1 mega watt electricity each day23
    • floating membrane will draw gas off as soon as produced and held in specific bladder tanks for use until required.23
      • methane is cooled before use, moisture and sulphides removed before being used in boilers.23

CST wastewater_edited-1Illustration of process of gas recovery of an Anaerobic lagoon
Source CST wastewater solutions

  • reduce plants carbon footprint22
  • reduce waste water22
    • noval distribution system along bottom of lagoon will allow water retention period lower from 25 days to 15.23
  • Plant expects to repay cost of construction within 5 years22
    • $5M – with return on investment in 4 years23
      • $4M in capital works alone
    • reduce annual gas bill by 42%23
  • after 5 years continue to deliver benefits and profitability virtually to perpetuity22
  • gaurd against future price rises in cost of energy and imposts such as carbon tax22
    • energy is a significant and rising component of operating, Diesel, electricity and gas23
  • Project is entirely self-funded and did not attract support under former Federal government carbon abatement grants23
  • Project research funding partially from Australian Meat Processor Corporation & MLA donar company as a Plant initiated Project26
    • If implemented the process can provide a number of direct and indirect economic, social and environmental benefits to abattoirs across Australia26
    • Funding is through private investment, matching governement dollars, and producer levies are used.26

Beef central 28.08.2014_edited-1Oakey abattoir Source Beef Central 28.08.2014

  • project should be finished by late 201523
  • Is the first to use covered lagoons, other installations use reactor tanks of cement or steel23
  • project may help to handle future expansion of plant23
    • vision that will process 1500 head per day using 6 day operation within 3 years23
      • depends on national herd recovery after the drought ends23
  • other plants at Mackay and Wingham will be considered for installation of COHRAL23
  • plant needs to have diligence of staff to ensure chemicals don’t affect bacterial action23
  • currently 750 people employed at Oakey22
  • March. Sod turning ceremony to begin biogas development.65
    • Oakey is sending 75% of its beef production to export.65
    • of the 1,000-1,300 head that go through each shift 500 come from the companies own feedlot.65
  • April Frozen beef shipments to Russia are temporarily suspended from 07/04/2014.81
    • A similar suspension occurred 31/03/2014 for chilled beef.81
    • Temporary suspension of beef offal imports occurred 27/01/2014.81
  • Oakey exports meat to Russia, along with another 29 Australian establishements.81
  • Russia placed new requirements of detection of Trenbolone.81
    • Australia placed additional requirements on its testing requirements.81
    • Russia detected Trenbolone 21/03/2014.81
    • Australian authorities held an immediate meeting with Russian counterparts.81
      • providing details of testing and invited Russia to inspect Australian meat establishments.81
      • Trenbolone is not produced from cattle treated with HGP’s.81
      • Russia has a zero tolerance, most countries have a maximum residue limit.81

 

  • Russia may consider Asia, Chinese port and Indian buffalo meat imports to replace decrease is supplies from the US, European union and Australia.81
  • Australia has been a traditional beef exporter to Russia since the 1970’s.81
    • To July 2012 – June 2013 exported 24,000 tonnes
    • To July 2013 – February 2014 20,000t
    • Trade is worth more than $170M a year
    • Russia is a declining market for Australian beef exports
    • Calendar year to date Russia taken only 1,221t beef
    • Full year exports 2010 and 2011 topped 60,000 tonnes

 

  • June. Currently killing to capacity on a single shift with overtime25
    • Looking to extend production hours in the coming year to service markets25
  • Currently killing 1,200 head per day25
    • 2014 has been a massive year for production25
    • record kill year to 12 months to March25
    • Female component of grasskill component has been close to double normal level in response to drought in supply area.25
      • Mt Isa, Julia Creek and Northern NSW25
    • Normally female kill of grassfed is 35-40% – has been 60-70%25
  • Big cattle numbers have impacted on prices to producers25
  • Oakey marketers able to keep product moving due mature and developing markets25
    • Big 3 – USA, Korea and Japan25
    • China has also been big markets25
  • Nippon Meats Whyalla feedlot account for approximately half of plant’s kill.25
    • Authors note – 600 / day on 5 day kill, 50 weeks operation = 150,000 head25
  • Oakey plant buy up to 95% of cattle on weight basis25
  • July. Oakey abattoir is 2nd only to the Australian Defence force when it comes to employment in the area.27
  • Currently employs 750 people27
    • 3 main catagories of employment27
      1. Administration & Management27
        • Production supervisors, export, shipping, quality assurance, livestock purchasing, export sales, marketing, micro-biology, accounting & environmental management, human resources, laboratory technicians & information technology27
      2. Production and Maintenance27
        • Meat processing roles – salughter, boning, slicing, packing, labour and cleaning.27
      3. Engineering27
    • Lifestyle benefits in meat processing.27
      • Most work start between 5-6.30am – end 2-3pm27
    • Processing facility operates year round except closure over Christmas and New Year27
  • Enterprise bargaining agreement was supported by employees27
    • In principle agreement was reached of EBA 16/07/2014.78
      • Explanatory document was given to employees, which they voted in a secret ballot within 10 days.78
  • $20M investment in infrastructure planned over the next 3 years27
  • Whyalla Beef  feedlot – has 50,000 head capacity supplies half to two thirds of cattle processed at Oakey.27
  • Oakey is currently processing 1,200 head per day for domestic and international markets.27
  • December. Biogas equipment is in the final stages of installation.66
    • 6,000 cubic metre capacity polyester flexible storage ‘balloon’ collects biogas from nearby covered lagoon.66

ABC rural 10.04.2015_edited-1

Oakey abattoir biogas ‘sphere’ Source  ABC Rural 10.04.2015

MLA case study. covered lagoon_edited-1

Covered Anaerobic lagoon that captures the biogas. Source MLA case study – May 2015

2015

  • January. MLA forecast.80
    • Australian cattle herd has gone from 35 year high (2013) to 20 year low (2015).80
    • Australian cattle herd slip to 26.8M head by June 2015.80
      • by 2016 expected decline to 26.5M head.80
      • by 2020 27.9M head.80
    • Adult cattle slaughter expected to slump 15% year on year.80
      • 2015 to 7.8M head.80
      • 2020 expected 7.9M slaughter.80
    • Long term Female average in 2014 52%.80
      • Normally female kill percentage 47%.80
      • Only in years 1977, 1998 & 2003 has female kill been above 50%.80
    • Beef exports record levels in 2014 1.39M tonnes shipped weight.80
      • Expected to drop 20% to 1.3M tonnes in 2015.80
  • February. Whyalla Beef Feedlot is ranked as 3rd largest in Australia according to Beef Central, one-time operating capacity.67
    • One-time operating capacity 56,000 head.67
    • Turnoff in 2014, 178,000 head.67
    • See Years 1988 & 1990 for details of holding capabilities
  • March. Cyclone Marcia cross the Capricornia Coast some plants were damaged.70
    • Supply is exceeding capacity in QLD at this point.70

Cyclone Marcia Feb 2015_edited-1

Impact of Cyclone Marcia February 2015. www.longpaddock.qld.gov.au

  • Oakey has re-activated Saturday boning shifts to keep up with high demand and rates of kill.70
  • April. Nippon have invested $100M in Oakey facility since taking ownership in 1987.68
    • Biogas will produce 183.3 gigajoules of energy per day.68
      • represents 40% of the current useage of natural gas.68
    • Annual production will lift from 298,000 to more than 560,000 head.68
    • Staff levels will rise from current 750 to 1,400.68
  • Increase in production proved the need to revitalise the western rail lines to towns such as Quilpie, Charleville, Morven & Roma.68
    • removing cattle trucks from the roads.68
      • easing up supply chain process.68
  • Funding that was applied for under the Gillard government was scrapped under Abbott in 2013.68
    • Project was built without any taxpayer funding.68
  • July. The following charts are from a submission by the Australian government Department of Agriculture to the Senate rural and regional affairs and transport references committee inquiry into Market consolidation and the red meat processing sector.

abattoir capacities dept ag sub consolidation_edited-1

Capacity of major beef abattoirs in QLD. Pg 15

T2 Throughput state beef_edited-1

Share of throughput by state for beef in 2014. Pg 16

T4 processing companies market share_edited-1

Major Processing companies by market share May 2015. Pg 16

M4 direct cattle movements NLIS QLD_edited-1

Cattle Movements to abattoirs. Pg 25

F12 hourly labour costs food manufacturing_edited-1

Hourly labour costs for food manufacturing industry Pg 30

  •  Oakey abattoir wants to access rail services to help increase through-put to 12,000 head a week.72
    • Rail is a critical part of strategy to double weekly kill.72
    • Current employees’s 730 people could be increased.
    • Rail line passes 300m from Oakey abattoir site.72
      • QLD rules don’t permit Oakey to receive cattle by train because there is no rail siding in place
    • Oakey are in advanced negotiations with QLD government to allow rail access
    • Oakey could utilise the rail for outgoing containers
      • currently delivers 100 containers of beef a week to Port of Brisbane
        • Many are underweight due to road limit restrictions
        • Many delivered by road could be moved by rail
  • QLD government currently subsidise Aurizon to provide rail services to rural and regional areas.72
    • restrictions had been placed on producers if they wanted to send cattle via rail they had to book the entire train – 800 hd.72
    • Last 4-5 years cattle rail service has virtually stopped.72
      • 12 years ago Quilpie would see 9 trains loaded a week.72
        • sending 100,000 head annually.72
      • Past 3 years only 5 trains have left Quilpie.72
        • 3 left in 2015.72
      • ‘ghost train’ Aurizon is funded to provide 27 cattle train services a year on the Western rail line
        • Only 7 ran last finanical year (2014/15)
        • Only 2 abattoirs are contracted to receive cattle from the rail JBS Dinmore (QLD) and Teys Beenleigh (QLD)
  • Lack of rail access  has seen large number of cattle drawn south towards abattoirs in Southern Australia.74
    • If rail enables cheaper freight those cattle could be coming back to QLD.74
  • New airport at Wellcamp has opened – 16km from Oakey facility.74
    • enable air-freight access to export customers, Asia & Middle East.74
      • United Arab Emirates is largest destination of air freight from Oakey.74
    • Increased opportunity to market shelf-ready portion controlled product.74
      • Particularly China – large potential growth area
  • Industrial relations progress.74
    • Old agreement meant 7.6hr shifts / 5 days a week with significant penalties for operating outside those restrictions.74
      • Could only operate the plant for 38 hours a week.74
    • New EBA 9.5hr shifts in the boning room and flexibility to move to 7 day operation.74
      • would allow plant capacity to increase to 1,650 per day over 7 days.74
      • length of employment of A grade Slaughterman in Australia was 25 years.74
  • Food safety and shelf life.74
    •  Americans sell their product 60-70 day shelf life.74
    • Australia sells it’s product 140 days.74
  • October. 10 mayors from Southern QLD form a mayoral group to act as a united lobby group for their region.76
  • represent 25% land area of QLD, quarter of QLD cattle and 75% of grain and crop production area.76
    • support the Oakey abattoir push for rail transport improvements.76
    • $2M in State and Federal funding is required to fund new rails sidings.76
      • Federal government feel that private investors should fund the improvements themselves.76
  • Oakey currently process 6,400 head a week.76
    • Announced plans to expand further but rely on the plant’s ability to source greater numbers of cattle.76
    • plans to increase to 11,500 head a week.76
      • add to processor competition in the area.76
    • Only 2 abattoirs are currently contracted to be supplied cattle on the Western line.76. JBS Dinmore (QLD) and Teys Beenleigh (QLD)
      • Oakey is to be added, starting January 2016.76
        • Contractually Oakey can recieve cattle but as they have no rail siding this is not physically possible.76
      • Oakey has to commit to transporting a minimum of 25,000 head per annum by year three.76
      • equates to 28 services per annum.76
        • increasing to 40,000 head after 3 years.76
  • December. ATO publishes tax data for agribusiness corporates.77
    • Data interpretation – Companies do not pay compay tax on revenue (total income) they pay on profits after paying all expenses, including wages, capital replacement, supplier costs and other operating expenses.77
    • Income tax information is for 2013/14.77
  • NH Foods produced Total Income $845,824.273.77
    • Nil taxable income and nil tax payable.77
  •  AACo have animals processed at Eastern abattoirs as service kill.63
  • See year 2013.63
  • Gross processing costs had increased in the 6 months to September 2015.63
    • $1.13 risen to $1.21/kg, 7% increase year on year HCW.63

 

2013_2015_edited-1

QLD Drought Situation 2013 – 2015 www.longpaddock.qld.gov.au

Sources – Oakey – Toowoomba. Nippon

  1. ‘Meat Processing in Australia’ IBIS World. June 2010
  2. ‘Meat Processing in Australia’ IBIS world. September 2013
  3. ‘Competition and Exit in meat processing’ Agribusiness review. Vol 7. 1999
  4. ‘… And the Beef goes on’ Marel meat news, undated
  5. www.nmpa.com.au
  6. ‘QR stops cattle trains to Oakey abattoir’ QLD Country life. 10.12.2009
  7. ‘Nippon’s hides processing plant closes it doors’ Beef Central 19.03.2012
  8. ‘Industrial action forces six-day Oakey closure’ Beef Central 30.04.2012
  9. ‘Productivity a bone of contention in abattoir strike’ ABC Rural. 01.05.2012
  10. ‘Strike action into 2nd week’ The Chronicle. 05.05.2012
  11. ‘Marchers send message’ Gympie Times. 07.05.2012
  12. ‘Oakey abattoir strike rolls on’ ABC rural 07.05.2012
  13. ‘Meatworkers left in limbo’ The Chronicle 10.05.2012
  14. ‘Meatworkers hope for answers’ Caboolture News 11.05.2012
  15. ‘Hope Oakey abattoir strike could end next week’ ABC rural. 11.05.2012
  16. ‘Fat lazy useless union bosses at it again’ Meat trade News Daily 20.05.2012
  17. ‘Abattoir workers return to work’ The Chronicle 21.05.2012
  18. ‘Critical mass shapes as next PCAS pasturefed program challenge’ www.certifiedpasturefed.com.au 05.09.2013
  19. ‘Weekly kill: Oakey figures highlight 2013’s drought impact’ Beef Central. 22.09.2013
  20. ‘Religious levy costs QLD abattoirs thousands each month’ The Courier mail. 20.10.2013
  21. ‘QLD abattoirs hit with thousands in Halal certification fees’ Food Magazine. 21.10.2013
  22. ‘Oakey abattoir’s world first’ QLD Country life. 07.03.2014
  23. ‘Self funded Oakey methane project looks to slash millions off energy bill’ Beef Central 10.03.2014
  24. ‘Nippon rides it out for long haul’ QLD Countrylife 13.02.2014
  25. ‘Oakey abattoir tips steady production’ QLD Country Life 26.06.2014
  26. ‘Environment: Processing waste water moves from problem to profit’ Beef Central. 28.08.2014
  27. ‘Oakey Beef Exports carves out many career options’ QLD Country Life 31.07.2014
  28. ‘World on a plate – A history of meat processing in Australia’ Stephen Martyn.2014
  29. NH Foods website & history
  30. NH foods OakeyBeef Exports
  31. ‘Abattoir revamp to boost job numbers’ ABC News 08.07.2003
  32. ‘Work begins on big meatworks revamp’ ABC News 16.01.2004
  33. ‘Oakey ire at power cut’ Caboolture News 11.09.2004
  34. ‘Beattie has a bone to pick with detractors’ Caboolture News 04.12.2004
  35. ‘Construction begins on Oakey water plant’ Caboolture News 17.05.2007
  36. ‘QLD smart award for abattoir’ ABC News 08.06.2007
  37. ‘Acid spill forces meatworks evacuation’ ABC News 12.08.2008
  38. ‘Cattle shortage cuts abattoir production’ Caboolture News 15.11.2008
  39. ‘Don’t say boo’ Caboolture News 14.08.2010
  40. ‘Victim faces claims of bullying’ Caboolture News 08.10.2010
  41. ‘Worrying time after abattoir shuts’ Caboolture News 31.03.2011
  42. ‘Booing meatworkers reinstated’ Caboolture News 28.06.2011
  43. ‘Caualties emerging as export kill pressure continues’ Beef Central 25.07.2011
  44. ‘Top chefs tour abattoir’ Caboolture News 05.08.2011
  45. ‘Where are all the cattle’ Beef Central 16.08.2011
  46. ‘Open day showcases Oakey facility’ Beef Central 31.08.2011
  47. ‘Kill rates edge upwards, despite flat meat demand’ Beef Central 12.09.2011
  48. ‘Slow season opening for processors’ Beef Central 11.01.2012
  49. ‘ABARES foreign owner processing assessment underwhelming’ Beef Central 20.01.2012
  50. ‘Weather disruptions unlikely to stimulate sustained price lift’ Beef Central 31.01.2012
  51. ‘Meatworkers stage walkout’ ABC News 30.04.2012
  52. ‘Striking meatworkers’ demand reasonable’ ABC News 01.05.2012
  53. ‘Uncertainty surrounds meatworkers’s return to work’ ABC News 04.05.2012
  54. ABARES foreign ownership 2011
  55. ‘Strike action into second week’ Caboolture News 05.05.2012
  56. ‘Meatworkers to decide on new enterprise deal’ ABC News 14.05.2012
  57. ‘Meatworkers return to work after pay deal struck’ ABC News 21.05.2012
  58. ‘Abattoir workers return to work’ Caboolture News 21.05.2012
  59. ‘Manufacturing skills award to Oakey staffmember’ Beef Central 23.05.2012
  60. ‘Award win a huge honour’ Caboolture News 24.05.2012
  61. ‘Oakey Abattoir’s world environmental initiative’ CST wastewater solutions
  62. ‘QLD kill eases 6%, but not for any supply reasons’ Beef Central 05.11.2012
  63. ‘AACo’s Darwin abattoir projected to be strong finanical performer’ Beef Central 18.03.2013
  64. ‘Dark clouds loom for start to 2014 slaughter season’ Beef Central 14.01.2014
  65. ‘Beef plant to halve energy costs by turning cattle waste into biogas’ The Courier-Mail 09.03.2014
  66. ‘Oakey’s biogas sphere delivers greener credentials, energy savings’ Beef Central 10.12.2014
  67. ‘Top 25 Lotfeeders: No 3 Whyalla Beef’ Beef Central 18.02.2015
  68. ‘Biogas plant fuels Oakey abattoir expansion’ Caboolture News 10.04.2015
  69. ‘The new biogas plant at Oakey Beef Exports in Oakey, Southern QLD’ ABC Rural 10.04.2015
  70. ‘Cyclone impact reflected in lower tally’ Beef Central 03.03.2015
  71. MLA case study – Waste to Energy technology May 2015
  72. ‘SW QLD abattoir pushes for more rail services for cattle’ ABC Rural 22.07.2015
  73. Dept Ag. Submission to Market consolidation and the red meat processing sector July 2015
  74. Oakey on track with rail, air plans’ Beef Central 04.09.2015
  75. ‘Agriculturally rich councils join to form lobby group’ Caboolture News 19.10.2015
  76. ‘$2M only barrier to better rail access for cattle’ Beef Central 20.10.2015
  77. ‘ATO publishes tax data for agribusiness corporates’ Beef Central 18.12.2015
  78. www.amieuqld.asn.au – negotiations oakey
  79. MLA Top 25 Red Meat Processors
  80. ‘MLA forecasts beef market adjustment’ The Land 27.01.2015
  81. ‘Update on Russia’s suspension on Australian beef’ Beef Central 03.04.2014
  82. AUS-MEAT Accreditation Listing 29.12.2015

Charleville. #101. QLD

A goat processing facility that is currently operating located in central QLD. This facility exports all its production. Charleville had past problems of securing visa workers to ensure ability to continue production. Floods have affected operations and government costs. Currently goat values are very good with a significant increase in various export markets

Other Names

  • Western export abattoirs
  • Western Meat Exporters

Current Operation

  • Currently operating.
  • Aus-Meat accreditation #01014
  • 100% export3
  • Processing capacity of up to 15,000 animals per week.26
    • 3,000 head a day26

Location   

  • Charleville

Hema Maps – Australia Truckies atlas.

Owner

  • Western Exporters2
    • totally Australian owned3
    • Managing Director – Neil Duncan6

Operation   

  • Processes mainly Goats,1
    • is licencsed to process sheep but not currently doing so3
  • Minimum dressed weight 10kg, ferals dress out about 42% with skin off.1
  • Producers use goats to supplement income with beef and sheep1
  • The largest goat processor in Australia3
  • Established with the main purpose to produce Halal goat and sheep meat products for all export markets3
    • United states3
    • European union3
    • Asia3
    • Middle east3

History

1997

  • Before the Charleville abattoir was built the government were spending $16M a year to control goats27.
    • Goats were regarded as feral27
  • August. Facility rebuilt after devastating fire3
    • Facility had only been  six months old27
  • Major flooding occurs in the Charleville area20

1999

  • October. Charleville abattoir refuse to pay $12,929 accreditation fee for 1999/2000 to QLD Livestock and Meat Authority (QLDMLA)2
    • QLDMLA served notice it would suspend licence if not paid2
    • Cause closure of abattoir currently employing 94 people2
    • Fee is due for any abattoir operating in the state of QLD2
    • Fee structure had been lowered from $15,000 to $12,9292
  • Abattoir and QLDMLA long running dispute concerning payment of fees2.
    • Had paid QLDMLA last 3 years yet a representative had never been on premises or conducted an audit2
    • QLDMLA is not the regulating body for export2
    • Abattoir do not sell meat domestically2
    • QLDMLA say fee is to maintain integrity of States meat processing system2
      • set by legislation and payable by all red meat processors2
      • Equivalent entry level fees NSW $2,000, Victoria $1,6002
  • Abattoir already paid fees for AQIS Export accreditation $30,000 pa2
    • Also paid $1,200 per month Ausmeat inspection fees2
    • Further $1,200 per month for AQIS audits2

2004

  • Major flooding occurs in the Charleville area20

2005

  • Western Exports win by bidding tender for Broken Hill Exports company5
    • Broken Hill abattoir at Broken hill shut down by  AQIS in November 2005, failed to meet guidelines5
  • May. 22 employees at the Charleville abattoir are on 457 temporary visa program38

2006

  • April. AQIS close facility as notice issued in November 2005 wasn’t complied with to improve yards to meet animal welfare standards of export abattoirs6.
    • 140 laid off for 2 weeks while improvments are made6
    • Director, Neil Duncan claimed could have been negotiated and stoppage not occur6
  • May. Abattoir employs 15 Vietnamese skilled workers and wants to employ another 50 immediately7
    • Visa applications are not being processed and is a problem being faced by meat abattoirs around the nation7

“This is Australia-wide…the Government has put a hold on all applications for the meat industry and, you know, I see on TV the unions up and down saying they’re going to lose Australian jobs…. well where are they?” Neil Duncan, managing director7

“Send them out to Charleville….there’s work here for them straight away” Neil Duncan. Managing Director7

  • Immigration department say there is no hold on visa applications7
    • allegations some employers are abusing the program and the department is in discussion with the industry over the concerns7
    • department understands Australia is experiencing a significant skill shortage7
  • July. Charleville abattoir begins a $2M expansion8
    • Enable production up to 3,000 head in an 8 hour shift of skin-on goats8
    • create another 50 jobs and boost export income by $15M8
    • US consumes 70-80% of the product produced8
    • Taiwan is big for 6 months for their winter season8
  • August. Charleville abattoir wants to employ 20 employees from Vietnam with visas9.
    • Federal government blocks application as meatworkers do not qualify as skilled workers9
    • Charleville had struggled 15 years ago because of decline in wool, now the abattoir was an important employer9
    • Senator Ron Boswell says he will help the abattoir overcome the visa restrictions by meeting ministers of immigration and workplace relations to push to have visas approved.9

2007

Source RIRDC.New.Animal.Abattoirs.in.Australia.2007

 

  • October. Australian dollar currently at 90 cents US, Is not good for exports10

“Overseas in the US they are actually paying the highest rate they have ever paid for a kilo of goat meat, but when you revert it back through our exchange rate we’re actually receiving the lowest we’ve received in 12 months” Neil Duncan. Managing director10

  • November. Neil Duncan travelled to Vietnam on a recruitment drive for workers11
    • Once worker shortage is filled in Charleville, work can resume at the Broken hill meatworks11

 

2008

  • Major flooding occurs in the Charleville area20
  • March. Charleville closes down temporarily due to critical staff shortages12
    • 100 workers laid off for an indefintie period with full entitlements12
      • Authors note. Another article cites. 90 workers laid off25
      • Included 15 Vietnamese workers who entered Australia on 457 visas25.
    • Need at least 50 more staff12
      • Need at least another 60 staff to remain viable25
    • $2M worth of product is being thrown out a year that should be boxed and exported12
    • Applications for visa workers are being held up by Federal government12
      • Immigration department was rejected repeated applications for more meatworkers from Vietnam25
        • Abattoir failed to meat 457 rules requiring Australians to be trained for jobs held by the foreign workers during the 4 year span of their visas15
      • Charleville facility has been trying to get immigrant workers for over 2 and a half years25
    • People are going to the mines, city for better conditions, bigger money and better lifestyle13
    • There is a chronic shortage of both skilled and unskilled workers25
  • Current Proprietor of Western Exporters – Neil Duncan25
  • Minimum wage at the present time is $803.00 a week25
    • AMIEU believe closure is a tactic by Charleville abattoir to pressure Canberra to allow the abattoir to employ migrants on lower than minimum wage awards25
  • April. Federal government will not allow employees from overseas unless the abattoir signs an agreement to employ the same number of local workers14
  • Agforce  says will be a significant drop in income for goat producers if the abattoir remains closed15
  • November. Overseas workers been allowed under the 457 visa program16
    • Employment from 90 to over 150 people now16
    • 24,000 goats processed in the last 2 weeks16
    • Setting new records for its production16
    • Should have been doing these sort of numbers years ago to keep up with the goat industry16

2009

  • February. Abattoir faces charges under the Land Act and the Integrated Planning Act, Department of Natural resources alleged it was land clearing without a permit17
    • Issued compliance notice to restore 240 ha native vegetation17
    • Millions of goats had been held on the land while they awaited processing, Mulga trees had died due to grazing pressure and drought17
    • All the company did was remove dead timber17
    • Before the Charleville magistrates court17
    • If company has to revegetate will have to lay off 40 workers and cut production of number of goats being processed17
  • December. New production record set18

“We hit our record of 2,780 skin-on goats for an eight hour period but we should have been at these levels probably five years ago but we’ve struggled with labour” Neil Duncan Managing director18

2010

  • March. Major flooding occurs in Charleville area20
  • Abattoir closed due to flooding19
    • Roads leading in and out of Charleville all flooded21
      • Unable to export or import product21
    • 180 workers stood down21
    • no time frame in place for re-opening21
  • Abattoir is too expensive to keep operating19
    • Needs government assistance to reopen19
    • Pay AQIS whether working or not $8,000 or $10,000 per week19
    • $60,000 in electricity a month19
    • Running costs are basically $400,000 a week19
  • re-opening of abattoir crucial to regions economy22
    • Government, Prime Minister assured abattoir nothing get in the way of reopening and workers on visa’s don’t leave region and stay for the plant to re-open22
    • Regional economy is losing $1M a week while abattoir is closed22
    • throughput in the community is in the order of $5M a month from abattoir operations22
  • April. Abattoir re-opens23
    • Getting access to goats has been a problem but abattoir is in full operation23

2013

  • At this point in time Charleville abattoir is the largest goat meat processor in the world26
  • May. Charleville participates in a sponsored Meat and Livestock Australia food expo in Shanghai with 14 other mostly beef and lamb producers26
  • July. Since the Shanghai food expo Charleville have signed $3M worth of orders with more to come26
  • US and Taiwan were traditionally the biggest goat meat importers26
    • Flat US economy and loosening of import regulations to China has made China more attractive export proposition26
  • Currently processing 15,000 animals per week26
    • 3,000 head a day26
  • Largest line, skin on product, Europeans call ‘Smokie’26
  • Western Meat exporters is the only processor in Australia that doesn’t have a boning room26
    • bone is left in with the meat frozen and cut into cubes26.
      • Packed into 1kg bags26
    • Customers traditionally use their hands to eat – they want warm product and to hold the bone” Trade and Investment QLD spokesman Morgan Gronold26
  • Operational costs of Charleville abattoir are getting too expensive26.
    • would be willing to move his operations offshore26
    • We just can’t compete, and electricity prices are making things pretty tough” Neil Duncan Western Meat Exports managing director26.
  • Charleville abattoir has operating capacity of 200 employees but at the moment only has 17526.
    • employees are too difficult to source26
  • Western QLD suppliers are urged not to move to far to pure Boer goat genetics26
    • Boer goats tend to put too much fat cover26
      • Most goat is slow cooked where high fat content isn’t desired26

 

2014

  • Number of new chillers had been added to facility extension27
  • July. Currently operating at full capacity.24
  • 80% of the feral goat herd is coming from the Surat Basin area.24
  • Roma #2 – Proposed (QLD) not looking to compete against Charleville.24

Source. Goatmeat-Fast-Facts-2014_EMAIL

Source Goatmeat-Fast-Facts-2014_EMAIL

  • October. Two 40-foot containers back up to the 1300 carcase capacity fridges for a daily trip to Brisbane port27
    • Output is set to grow27
  • Charleville abattoir has a 100% export focus27
    • Current director at this time – Campbell McPhee27.
    • Since free trade talks with Korea, exports to that country had increase 140-fold27
  • New techniques to reduce hair contamination and modern equipment keep pace with the stringent health requirements demanded by overseas markets27
    • Sprays and vacuums are in use to achieve zero tolerance hair control27
    • Workers have colour coded hair nets to show what jobs and areas of the abattoir they are allowed27
      • separate eating rooms to prevent possible contamination between different parts of the plant27
  • Current livestock purchases of 16,000 goats per week27
    • 75% of supply comes from NSW27
    • Processing 3,000 head per day27
      • the kill line moving 6.5 goats every minute27
  • Currently employing 185 people and another 15 in the trucking company27
    • Western meat exporters use their own trucks to collect goats from properties and depots26

2015

  • January. Goat is worth $3.70 (12.1 to 16kg carcass weight)39.
  • There are approximately 6 million wild goats in Australia29.
    • Generally regarded as a pest, increasingly becoming regarded as a good alternative income29.
  • Australian exports of goat meat have doubled to 35,800t in 2014 since 200429.
    • Most is sold to the USA for Hispanic population29.
  • Live exports of goat have jumped from 50,500 head to 88,500 from 2004 to 201429.
  • Wild goats are purchased for $1.70/kg live weight29.
  • Live export goat price is $4.20/kg live weight29.
    • Average goat sells for $55 per head29.
  • August. Charleville (Game meat) abattoir that had closed in 2009 due to the collapse of the Russian kangaroo market proposes an upgrade to the facility to process 350 head a day of cattle35.
    • Employ 140 people35
    • Chinese investor $45M, who has become a partner in the business35
    • Expected to be in operation within a year35
  • October. Bourke Shire backs a proposal to build the abattoir29.
    • Expected to cost $61M. Bourke. Currently under construction. NSW
      • Aims to process 6,000 goats a day40
      • Employ 200 people 40
      • Abattoir should be up and running by mid 201740.
      • Developer Capra Pty Ltd40.
        • Capra is made up of partners with experience in both export and market processing operations and supply37
  • Another proposal to build a facility at Blayney NSW
    • Developer – Metziya40.
    • Would process 4,500 animals per day40
      • but it had received public opposition.
  • Bourke goat abattoir is expected to cost $60M to build30
    • Create 200 jobs30
    • World’s largest goat processing abattoir30
  • Currently 90% of the states (NSW) goats are transported interstate to be sold30
    • 95% of those transported are killed and processed in QLD, Victoria and South Australia30

Source. mla_goat-fast-facts-2015

Source. mla_goat-fast-facts-2015

  • Rangelands goats are currently the star performers of Australian red meat sector in 201531.
    • Farm-gate prices for goats have almost doubled in past 12 months to over $5 per kg31.
    • There has been a fundamental increase in demand relative to supply31.
      • In the past Australia has largely relied on one market the USA to take its product31.
      • Had been no other high volume markets to force price upwards pressures31.
    • Now there are new and emerging markets61.
      • Competing against the USA for goat meat product31.
      • Increasing markets to Taiwan, Vietnam, Indonesia, Korea, and China31.
    • Demand is likely to grow as trade tariff barriers are reduced with recently secured Free Trade Agreements31.
  • A number of southern Sheep processing plants are now processing goats in response to positive demand outlook31.
  • Supply pressure of goats has not been as constant this year due to increased demand31.
  • Goat populations  in the past have mostly been sourced by opportunistic harvesting of wild herds31.
    • MLA estimates there are around 4M head of goats in Australia at present31.
      • Only 500,000 are in managed herds31.
    • Challenge for industry is whether it can build a supply base to fulfil and sustain new levels of demand31.
  • Prices for goats have traditionally fluctuated31
    • To encourage sustainable development of the industry a five year strategy has been released31.
    • Goatmeat and Livestock Industry Strategic Plan 2020
  • Goats have a low cost of production that has some advantages over raising other stock31.
  • December. Bourke abattoir gets Federal government funding $10M32.
    • Grant will assist the facility to overcome challenges of isolation and lack of infrastructure at the remote site32.

2016.

  • January. Goat meat is worth $5 /kg (12.1 to 16kg carcass weight)39.
  • Charleville #101. QLD. Says its future will be jeopardised if the Bourke plant goes ahead33.
    • Goat supply in QLD, NSW and Victoria is too low to accommodate a new abattoir33.
    • Charleville #101 QLD processed 70% of the goats sourced from producers across the border in 201533.
      • Charleville processed 620,000 animals last year for export33.
    • If the Bourke plant is successful in being built it would threaten processing jobs at Charleville facility33.
    • Charleville never received a similar grant from the government and feel it is an unfair advantage to the Bourke site33.
  • Currently in NSW there are seven different abattoir processing goats33.
  • Authors note. The above reference was by the speaker of the article, it may include domestic facilities that are not on this blog.(03/12/2017)

Source Australian Abattoirs Locations – Australian goat processing abattoirs as per Aus-meat as at 02/10/2017

Above diagram. Bourke is indicated by the green pointer slightly above centre of picture. Charleville is located directly above Bourke to the far north. Abattoirs are marked as red for Export or blue for Domestic accreditations. No abattoirs specialise only in goat processing. Most are combinations of beef, sheep and goat. There are facilities in WA and one in Tasmania not shown on this diagram

  • Murweh Shire council Mayor, Dennis Cook speaks and writes to Federal government explaining his shire don’t want to see ‘a big lot of government money coming in and propping them up, because our business here is a wonderfully run business…”, Charleville #101 QLD Shire council explains is a privately run business34.
    • Charleville shire don’t want to interfere in what happens in NSW but they are concerned the Bourke facility will negatively impact on the employees at Charleville34.
  • February. Bourke Site Plans are developed and submitted for approval36
  • March. NSW Planning and Environment release a media statement for community views on the Bourke abattoir36.
    • Bourke abattoir will have capacity to process 6,000 goats, sheep or lambs per day for export36.
    • Submissions close 26/04/201636
  • Stock Supply. Bourke abattoir make an agreement with a goat depot located in Bourke to supply the facility (Pg 2)43.
    • Depot currently sends 200,000 outside of Bourke for sale or process(Pg 2)43
  • August. Proposal to revamp existing closed Kangaroo abattoir at Charleville Game meat. QLD 35
    • Facility will be refurbished to suit killing cattle35
    • Chinese Investor $45M35
  • December. Development consent for the Bourke abattoir has been approved37.
      • Now in the construction certificate phase37.
        • Project spokesperson JPA Business Managing Director – James Price37.
        • Slaughter level of 6,000 head per day will take some time to reach at an operational level37
          • When fully operational the facility will have the potential to almost double the value of goat exports from Australia37.
  • Bourke abattoir will be a useful outlet for producers who rely on meat exporters slaughtering in other states37.
    • Major priority  is to capture the goat meat demand in the international market37.

2017

  • January. Goat meat is worth $6/kg (12.1 to 16kg Carcass weight)39.
  • May. Currently employ 165 staff28
    • 52 of the 165 are undertaking the 457 temporary visa program38
    • Federal government had announced they would abolish the 457 program but have rectified the decision to not impact the meat industry38

Source ‘Vietnamese farmer moved to Charleville to  give his children a better education’ QLD Country Life 12/05/2017

  • June. Construction of the cement foundations begins39.
    • Plant is expected to be operational early 201839.
  • When in operation it is expected to boost Bourke regional economy by 30%39.
    • approximately $50M is expected to be injected into the Bourke local economy per year39.
  • Estimates of 5.8M goats in Western NSW39.
    • 50-60% of all of Australia’s feral goats located in NSW44.
    • Others dispute these figures39.
      • Bourke. Local producers ‘economics’ would play a major role to determine if they sent their stock to the facility39.
  • DPI is about to start a new goat count across NSW39
  • This week goat carcasses hit $7.50/kg, averaging $6.50/kg14.
    • January 2015, the monthly average was $3.70 (12.1 to 16kg carcass weight)14.
    • January 2016 $5/kg14.
    • January 2017 $6/kg14.
  • Australian Goat industry is currently in a rebuilding phase39.
    • Market potential in Europe39.
    • Goat meat was being included in new Brexit trade talks39..
  • it was a big challenge to get more western graziers to produce goats39
  • August. A new goat abattoir is proposed for the Goulburn Valley, Gillieston (Proposed) Vic.41.
    • Capacity of 3,000 head per day41.
    • Plant could be operational in about 18 months if approvals go through41.
  • November. 2,197 solar panels are installed on the roofs of the facility42
    • rising energy costs are a major threat to the profitability of the meat processing sector
    • Cost $1.4M42.
      • 756KW system, equivalent to power requirements of 252 homes42.
      • Panels are designed to operate independently in case one is covered by shadow or dust42.
      • Initiative was wholly privately funded42.
        • Australian Renewable Energy agency didn’t provide assistance as they were more interested in new and emerging technology42.
      • Costs of the installation expected to be re-couped within 5 years42..
      • cost of panels was actually less than the plants annual electricity bill42

Source ‘Charleville’s solar innovator’ QLD Country Life 23.11.2017

  • December. NSW Department of primary Industries conduct a rangeland population survey of goats46.
    • Show goat herd has declined from 5.7M in 2016 to 3.4M in 201746
    • Aerial survey was conducted of central and western NSW46
    • Lower numbers could be due to 46
      • Dry seasonal conditions46
        • Poor reproductive rates of livestock and goats46
      • Efficient goat harvesting operations in the area46

Sources

  1. ‘Goats prove Winton winners’ QLD Country life 13.06.2013
  2. ‘Closure looms for Charleville abattoir’ QLD Country life 13.10.1999
  3. www.westernexporters.com.au – Accessed 07.03.2014
  4. aus meat accreditation as at 01.01.2014
  5. ‘QLD company set to become leading goat exporter’ ABC News 16.12.2005
  6. ‘Goat abattoir lays of 140 in quarantine dispute’ ABC news. 04.04.2006
  7. ‘Immigration delay hampers goat meat abattoir expansion’ ABC news. 29.05.2006
  8. ‘Expansion of Aust largest goat abattoir gets under way’ ABC News. 31.07.2006
  9. ‘Boswell vows to help meatworks secure visas’ ABC news 14.08.2006
  10. ‘Strong dollar hurting goat meat exports’ ABC News 16.10.2007
  11. ‘Meatworks owner hopes new government frees up foreign worker recruitment’ ABC news 27.11.2007
  12. ‘Goat meat exporter to shut Charleville abattoir’ ABC News 20.03.2008
  13. ‘Goat abattoir closes outback QLD plant’ ABC News 26.03.2008
  14. ‘Govet unmoved on abattoir worker conditions’ ABC News 03.04.2008
  15. ‘Abattoir closure ‘will hurt goat producers’ ABC News 03.04.2008
  16. ‘Goat abattoir breaks production records’ ABC News 04.11.2008
  17. ‘Goat abattoir owners face land clearing charges’ ABC News 10.02.2009
  18. ‘Goat production hits high’ ABC News 10.12.2009
  19. ‘Goat abattoir too expensive to run’ ABC News 09.03.2010
  20. ‘Flood-drunk Charleville’ www.ben-global.com
  21. ‘Floods close abattoir’ The Chronicle 10.03.2010
  22. ‘Meatworks re-opening crucial’ ABC News 17.03.2010
  23. ‘Goat abattoir re-opens after flood woes’ ABC News 09.04.2010
  24. ‘Roma ramps up abattoir study’ QLD Country Life 31.07.2014
  25. ‘Lack of migrant staff forces Charleville abattoir to shut’ The Australian 22/03/2008
  26. ‘Charleville’s China forey’ QLD Country Life 01/07/2013
  27. ‘Charleville goats full bore’ QLD Country Life 21/10/2014
  28. ‘Developers say $38M Blayney goat abattoir will provide …..’ Central Western Daily 07/05/2015
  29. ‘Growth in goat farming in Bourke for halal butchers and restaurants’ www.smh.com.au 08/06/2015
  30. ‘Bourke goat abattoir could be a “game-changer”, says MP’ ABC News 22/10/2015
  31. ‘What is behind the rise and rise of goat prices? Beef Central 29/10/2015
  32. ‘Bourke goat abattoir gets Federal government funding’ ABC rural 08/12/2015
  33. ‘QLD goat processor says jobs will go if government-backed Bourke abattoir is built’ ABC news 05/01/2016
  34. ‘Cross border goat abattoir competition’ Charleville Plus More. 14/01/2016
  35. ‘Charleville set to get abattoir in 2017’ Sunshine daily 02/08/2016
  36. Proposed Small Stock Abattoir. Capra Developments Feb 2016
  37. ‘Bourke abattoir gets OK’ The Land 07/12/2016
  38. ‘Vietnamese farmer moved to Charleville to  give his children a better education’ QLD Country Life 12/05/2017
  39. ‘Bourke abattoir on way’ The Land 08/06/2017
  40. ‘Two new goat abattoirs planned in Bourke and Blayney’ The Land 09/07/2016
  41. ‘Abattoir in the works’ Country News 09/08/2017
  42. ‘Charleville’s solar Innovator’ QLD Country Life 23/11/2017
  43. Bourke. Small stock abattoir. Environmental Impact Statement March 2016
  44. www.markcoulton.com.au. media release 27/07/2017
  45. RIRDC.New.Animal.Abattoirs.in.Australia.2007
  46. ‘Latest goat industry data’ NSW DPI 13/12/2017

Kilcoy

Other Names

Current Operation

  • Currently operating as at December 2013.

Location   

  • 120 km NW of Brisbane in Brisbane valley

Australia. Kilcoy

Kilcoy  001

Hema Maps – Australia Handy Map. 9th Edition

Owners

  • Kilcoy Pastoral company1
    • CEO – Tony Munns appointed 1999, succeeded by David Foote.1
  • Harmony Investment fund – Singapore based – Harmony Capital management3
    • Harmony purchased in 20074
  • Pacific Alliance Group (2012)3
  • New Hope Investment Fund – Chinese4

Operation   

  • Marketing strategy – Naturally Identified, Safe environment (NISE) Beef export program1
  • Dedicated grainfed, export focussed plant.3
  • Capacity to process 285,000 head per year3
  • Employed 750 staff (as at 2012)3

History

Year

1950’s

  • First established by Kennedy Family4

1999

  • Appointed new CEO – Tony Munns1

2002

  • Major improvements epected to provide 10% production boost and 50 full time jobs.2
  • Currently employing 340 people (plus the extra 50 to add)2

2003

  • Volume had increased through the plant by 35% to same period in previous year.2
  • Further Funding provided by Federal Government – Dairy Regional Assistance Program $880,0002
    • Further enhance production capacity and improve efficiency2
    • Improve primary freezer capacity, improve ability to process by products and improve the standard and quality of effluent disposal2
  • Previous 12 months had been difficult in world markets2
  • Target Pacific Rim countries in particular Japan and Korea2

2007

  • Harmony Capital Management’s Harmony Investment Fund4
  • Throughput for 2007 was 54,000t carcase weight, 160,000 cattle.5
    Note by author (Jo Bloomfield) if average yield is 337.5kg, estimate live weight processing 52% dressed Is approximately processing animals live weight 650kg.

2009

  • Australian Agriculture Co’s largest shareholder – IFFCo flag interest in purchasing abattoir5
    • Would be acquired by IFFCo under assigned put-and-call option – allows later transfer of ownership to AA Co5
    • IFFCo is large international red meat processor – killing 10,000 buffalo daily in India5
    • AA Co considering cost-benefit studies of owning meatworks as adjunct to branded beef business5
      • Currently utilises service kill at Grantham and occasionally at Casino5
  • Kilcoy provides strong marketplace competition against larger players Swift and Teys grainfed cattle processing5
  • Kilcoy is has current kill capacity 570 head a day, single shift, seven day operation5

2011

  • Processed 250,000 head, emplyed 750 staff.3

2012

  • Harmony Investment Fund – had owned a majority share of 80% sold to Pacific Alliance Group3

2013

  • Chinese investment fund – New Hope Investment fund purchase facility4
    • Purchase price about $80M6
    • one of the biggest operators of feedlots in China4
  • Kilcoy Abattoir is currently fourth largest abattoir in Australia4
  • Is currently processing 265,000 grain fed cattle a year4

2015

  • July. The following charts are from a submission by the Australian government Department of Agriculture to the Senate rural and regional affairs and transport references committee inquiry into Market consolidation and the red meat processing sector.
  • abattoir capacities dept ag sub consolidation_edited-1

    Capacity of major beef abattoirs in QLD. Pg 15

    T2 Throughput state beef_edited-1

    Share of throughput by state for beef in 2014. Pg 16

    M4 direct cattle movements NLIS QLD_edited-1

    Cattle Movements to abattoirs. Pg 25

    F12 hourly labour costs food manufacturing_edited-1

    Hourly labour costs for food manufacturing industry Pg 30

 

Sources

  1. ‘New Heads for Kilcoy, ACC abattoirs’ QLD Countrylife 13.10.1999
  2. ‘Kilcoy abattoir upgrade’ QLD Countrylife 29.05.2003
  3. ‘Harmony sells stake in Kilcoy, Harvey Beef’ Beef Central 06.12.2012
  4. ‘Kilcoy abattoir sold to Chinese Investment Fund’ The Australian 06.12.2013
  5. ‘IFFCo eyes Kilcoy abattoir in AAco deal’ Stockjournal 18.06.2009
  6. ‘Stations now in hot demand’ Nth QLD Register 10.07.2014
  7. Dept Ag. Submission to Market consolidation and the red meat processing sector July 2015

Cloncurry #2 (Proposed)

Current Operation

  • Proposal investigated 2012

Location

  • 120 km East of Mt Isa

Australia. Cloncurry

CloncurrySource – Hema Australia Handy map 9th edition.

Owner

  •  

 Operation

  •  

History

 2012

  • October.DAFF release Feasibility study and investment report for Cloncurry proposal2
  • Study conducted and handed to North Beef consultants Oct 20121
  • Nth West QLD – report – commercial viability
    • Proposal to process 400 head a day = 100,000 head a year3
    • Infrastructure would cost $49M, doesn’t include land, services required by governement.3
    • Match of investment by government expect $10 – $28M3
    • Operating costs at Cloncurry would be higher due to input and output freight costs3
    • Throughput of livestock would be detrimental in to mainly Townsville abattoir3
    • Model suggest $41 head supply chain cost saving due to freight, processor would retain 40-60% to cover freight costs.3
  • Nth West QLD – report – opportunities
    • Would be expect to draw 170,000 head a year of slaughter ready cattle4
      • NW QLD      96,000 head4
      • NT              14,000 head4
      • locals/culls    5,000 head4
      • Expected starting estimate of 115,000 head to be able to process.4
  • Expected Hot standard carcase weight (HSCW) is the weight of carcase after slaughter4
    • Bulls all weights. Make up market supply of 10-15%4
    • Trade cows 180kg – 350kg. Make up market supply of 20-30%4
    • Young steers/Heifers 235-350kg Make up market supply of 30-45%4
    • Grass fed/grain fed Steers/bullocks 265-350kg Make up market supply of 10-20%4
    • Jo Bloomfield. Note at yield of 50% these HSCW mean liveweights of cows to be minimum 360kg, Young steers 470kg and heavy steers 530kg.
  • Payroll estimates 220 employees, would require non traditional shift structure, and use of 457 visas and would compete with mining and resource sectors4
  • marginal return expected on investment4

 

Sources

  1. ‘Northern plants jockey for processing position’ Stock Journal 25.10.12
  2. ‘Minister favours Cloncurry abattoir’ QLD Country Life 11.10.12
  3. Evaluating commercial viability of an northern outback QLD meat processing facility (2012)
  4. Nth West QLD abattoirs, opportunities (2012)

Cloncurry #1

Current Operation

  • Operating (2012)1

Location             

  Australia. Cloncurry                

Owner                 

  •  

Operation          

  • Small local processor1

History                

 

Sources

  1. ‘Northern Australian beef Industry – Assessment of risks and opportunities’ ABARE. 2012.
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