Tag Archives: Western Australian meat industry


Current Operation

  • Currently Accredited AUS-MEAT 14.01.132
    • Establishment Number 0686


  • 170km S Perth

Australia. Bunbury

BunburySource – Hema Australia Map. 9th edition


  • V & V Walsh Meat processor & Exporters4
  • Vern & Jean Walsh established 1957, business now currently operated by Sons Peter & Greg Walsh7


  • Cattle,Sheep  and lamb3
  • Export accredited
  • Medium sized1 – says is a multi species ab???
  • Is a preferred supplier to Woolworths1
  • Is a fully integrated plant but has limitations1
  • Considered as best alternative to assist to increase capacity for export if ‘Harvey’ fell over, has much smaller capacity than Harvey1
  • Can process 400 hd a day4. Doesn’t stipulate if means sheep or cattle.
  • Beef & sheep products distributed throughout Australia, retail through Woolworths, speciality stores and restaurants7
  • V & V Walsh supply markets to other countries, including China, Have an office in Bejing7
  • Branded products – Amelia Park Lamb & Beef, distributed with partner company Trim & Tasty meats.7
  • All beef and lamb slaughter is done so by accredited Muslim slaughtermen using Halal kill techinques7
  • Abattoir itself employs 420 people, Woolworths expansion in 2011 employed further 70 staff, total Staff employed 650 people9
  • Can slaughter 3500 head lamb/mutton a day, half is boned and packed on site7
  • Have a shedded feedlot for lamb to guarantee supply7
  • Can slaughter 400 head cattle a day, ability to bone and process 300 carcasses a day7
  • Offal is trimmed and packed to customer specifications. Time from leaving the kill floor to freeze the offal to -10C, less than 48 hours.7

outsideSource – http://www.insightps.com.au
Bunbury abattoir – Western Australia



  • established by Vern & Jean Walsh7


  • underwent significant expansion in abattoir processing area and ‘cold chain’ connections between the abattoir and the production and warehouse facilities5
  • Expansion cost $31M – The Bunbury meat centre9
  • Deboning room expansion included
    • construction of new export standard beef/sheep chiller facilities6
    • load out facility extensions6
    • new amenities for staff6

boning roomSource – http://www.insightsps.com.au.
Boning room facilities inside Bunbury abattoir

  • Cold storage included
    • 32,000 carton capacity cold storage6
    • 2000 pellets of chilled meat9

ChillerSource – http://www.insightsps.com.au.
Chiller facilities inside Bunbury abattoir


  • Bunbury employer – CEO Peter Walsh. blames Bunbury’s staggering unemployment rate of 6.3%, (above WA state average of 3.8%, and Australia’s 5.1%) on widespread ‘slack’ attitude of local workers8
  • Abattoir employs temporary foreign workers because locals are “not up to the task”8
  • Foreign workers are not cheap but more reliable than Australians8
  • One third of employee’s come from overseas using 457 visa, allow eligible workers to be employed for up to 4 years or a working holiday visa8
  • Employing foreign workers involved constant retraining and rehiring of new staff8
  • Continually advertised for new staff in last 5 years.


  • Signed a $1B deal with Chinese company Grand Farm10
    • Grand Farm are the largest red meat importer in China.10
      • Currently supply 1% of Chinese market10
      • Want to increase to 3%10
    • If average lamb consumption is increased in China by 1 kg require extra 65M lambs10
    • If average beef consumption is increased in China by 1kg require extra 6.5M cattle10
  • Bunbury (Harvey Beef) is the only accredited exporter of WA beef to China11
    • Currently 75% of Bunbury production is sold domestically11
    • Expansion, within 5 years will double exports to about 50%11
  • Bunbury will process extra 500,000 lambs and 30,000 cattle to begin to supply Grand Farm10
    • Possible many grain producers will shift to livestock production.10
  • V & V Walsh are assisting in setting up Cattle feedlot in inner Mongolia10


  1. Parliament Hansard P. Omodei 17.08.05
  2. AUS-MEAT Accreditation list 14.01.13
  3. WAMIA Meat Processors 2013
  4. ‘Northern Australian Beef Industry – Assessment of risks and opportunities’ ABARE 2012
  5. www.insights.com.au, sourced 23.06.13
  6. www.capitalhouse.com.au, sourced 23.06.13
  7. www.halalexporter.com, sourced 23.06.13
  8. ‘Bleak jobless outlook for Bunbury workforce’ Bunbury Mail. 11.06.12
  9. ‘Bunbury meat centre extension opening’ www.woolworthslimited.com.au. 21.03.12
  10. Billion dollar meat deal with Chinese importer. Beef Central. 17.06.2014
  11. ‘We’ll have meat with that’ Nth QLD Register. 19.06.2014

Robb Jetty

Other names

  • Fremantle Freezing and Meat works7

Current Operation

  • Closed, is now a historic site with a preserved chimney of the original meat processing works.6


Source – http://www.mingor.net/

Robbs Jetty meat processing site, historic chimney that has been preserved at the site.


  • Fremantle Freezing and meat works7

Australia. Robb Jetty

Map. Robb JettySource – Hema Maps. Australia Truckies Atlas.


  • Fremantle Freezing and Meat Works7
  • Western Australian Meat Preservers7
  • Western Australian Meat Exporters7



  • Processed cattle and sheep
  • Had access from sea for unloading barges and railhead for inland animals
  • Export2
  • Operated originally by the WA Meat co-operative
  • had a long pier/jetty going to the ocean – named Robs Jetty.
  • Cattle transported from North WA, barges would unload onto jetty and animals walk to abattoir.
  • Closed due to population pressure, other abattoirs & prices



  • Meat houses constructed in the area to service the convict establishment at Femantle Gaol7


  • Duracks (Kimberley’s) through agents Francis Conner and Dennis Doherty shipped cattle to Fremantle5
  • Dame Mary Durack- ‘Sons in the saddle’ – cattle originally swam to shore, now offloaded onto a jetty5
  • Cattle getting £3 a head in south markets, started their own Live Export to Manila5
  • Slaughterhouses established in the area, known as ‘Kimberley Meat Ring’, they had a monopoly on meat supply to metropolitian and Goldfields7.
    • Forrest, Emaual and Co
    • Conner, Doherty and Durack


  • Railway was built from Fremantle to Robb Jetty6
  • Same period abattoir was built in Fremantle – consisted of offices, holding yards, freezer and chiller facilities6


  • Robb Jetty constructed – prior to construction animals unloaded into the water and swam to shore7
  • Robb jetty abattoir constructed, portion being the preserved chimney – Known as Fremantle Freezing and Meat works. Capacity limited to few thousand lambs per year7
  • Abattoir also was cold store for potatoes, fruit, manufactured ice and carried out wool scouring7


  • Robb Jetty company in financial strife, Commonwealth government stepped in to provide help.7


  • Company bought out by government, changed name to Western Australian Meat Preservers’ latter to ‘Western Australian Meat Exporters’7
  • Abattoir diversified to include fruit storage, egg pulp, turtle and crayfish processing7


  • Ship – Centaur,passenger liner that carried 4000 sheep below decks. turned every fortnight from Singapore, Kuala Lumpar & Perth, return trip would pick up at Broome from Emaual stations and taken to Fremantle, sold at Robbs Jetty saleyards5 Pg 25


  • Jetty dismantled, possibly in 1960’s6


  • Abattoir closed by the National Party3


  • Numerous attempt to revive competitiveness failed and was shut down7


  • Equipment removed from building.7
  • Chimney is only part remaining, listed on the State register of Heritage Places.6


  • State Government supplied $50,000 for restoration of chimney.7


  1. Personal Communication #1 28.01.13
  2. Parliament Hansard. S. Thomas. 17.08.05
  3. Parliament Hansard M Trenorden 17.08.05
  4. ‘Brief History of the WA Lamb Marketing board’ www.wammco.com.au
  5. ‘The Australian Livestock export trade’ Nigel Austin 2011
  6. ‘South Fremantle, Western Australia’ Wikipedia, 24.06.13
  7. ‘Interim Heritage listing for Robb Jetty Chimney’ Richard Lewis, Ministerial Media statement. 23.08.96


Current Operation

  • Closed November 20092


  • 11km north of Margaret River.

Australia. Cowaramup

Map. Cowaramup


  • Western Meat Processors, Director – F.E Lee3
    • General Manager, J Mc Quillan2


  • Processed Cattle1
  • Employs 452
  • Workers numbers 572




  • Western Meat Processors begun operations at Cowaramup2


  • March. Expansion worth $750,000, would provide increased slaughter throughput in late 2009.2
  • November 16th. Closed due to plant where carcases were processed destroyed by fire and not other plants available to process meat.2
  • O’Conner Meat factory4.
    • Owned by Western Meat Packers, located in McNeece Place, O’Conner, established 27 years.
    • Owner of O’Conner, Rod Russell also owned lamb processing plant in Osbourne park
    • Employed 300 people.
    • Fire was caused by an electrical fault in an exhaust system, caused $10M damage
    • were processing 2000 head of cattle a week
  • Staff undertook maintenance work until December, when facility was shut down entirely, future work in January would continue maintenance.2


  • Licence issued 3rd February 2011to operate the works prescribed under the Environmental Protection Act. Issued for an extended period of 3 years5
    • Licence #L8036/1993/5. File SWB2063.
    • Category 15:Abattoir
    • Category 55: Livestock saleyard or holding pen


  1. WAMIA Meat Processors 2013
  2. ‘Cowaramup abattir to remain closed’ Farm Weekly 10.12.09
  3. http://www.mantra.com
  4. ‘Fire causes $10M damage to O’Conner meat factory’ Perth Now. 16.11.09.
  5. Environmental Protection Licence. Government of WA – Dept of Environment and conservation
  6. ‘Abattoir capacity in WA’. Letter by Terry Redman. Minister for Agriculture and Food. 18.03.09


Other Names

  • Nambeelup.

Current Operation

  • Closed 2004


  • Nambeelup – 90km S of Perth

Australia. Mandurah

Map.MandurahSource – Hema maps. Australia truckies atlas


  • Nebru Exports –
  • Nottle Family    


  • Chilling equipment was of a very high standard1




  • Closed – Sold by receivers – purchased by EG Greens & Sons $5M was immediately gutted.1


  • District structure plan has abattoir ceasing operation 2006. (pg 14)2


  1. Parliament Hansard. P. Omodei 17.08.05
  2. http://www.planning.wa.gov.au/dop_pub_pdf/Nambeelup_DSP_Complete_-_August_2012.pdf


Current Operation

  • Operating as a special purpose abattoir


  • 30 km E of Mandurah

Australia. Karnet

Map. KarnetSource – Hema Maps. Australia Truckies Atlas


  • Karnet Prison farm – is a minimum security prison2


  • Cattle & sheep processed in abattoir1
  • Training site for prisoners to gain experience and knowledge in agricultural production for employment prospects.2
  • Karnet works in conjunction with Pardelup prison farm (Mt Barker), have herd of cattle and sheep, produce is sold on the open market and steers brought to process in the abattoir with cull animals off the farms in the abattoir and boning plant.3
  • Farms produce milk, eggs, vegetables and fruit for other prisons in WA, estimated to save $2M a year in the produce being able to be supplied.3
  • Equipment, sheds and hydroponic systems built from equipment seized in drug raids.3




  • Prison farm established2



  1. WAMIA Meat processors 2013
  2. http://www.correctiveservices.wa.gov.au/prisons/prison-locations/karnet.aspx
  3. ‘Inside job’ Landline. 19.02.12. http://www.abc.net.au/landline/content/2012/s3434298.htm


Current Operation

  • Operating as a special purpose abattoir for educational purposes.


  • 120 km SE of Geraldton

Australia. Morawa

Map. MorawaSource – Hema Maps – Australia Truckies Atlas


  • Morawa Agricultural College


  • Cattle, sheep, lamb & Pig1
  • Special Abattoir1




  1. WAMIA Meat Processors 2013


Current Operation

  • Currently accredited with AUS-MEAT as at 14.01.13, Establishment # 0041W2


  • Geraldton – 40km south of Geraldton

Australia. Greenough

Map. Greenough


  • D & K Hagen
  • Hagen Bros


  • Small plant1
  • Cattle, sheep, lamb, goat, pig & Deer2




  1. Parliament Hansard. P Omodei 17.08.05
  2. AUS-MEAT Accreditation list 14.01.13


Current Operation

  • Closed


  • East Kimberley, 120km from NT border

Map Wyndham

map.Wyndham 001Source – Hema Australia Handy map 9th edition.

Locations of other Australian abattoirs.


  • Project Development Corporation (PDC) prior to 19765
  • Wyndham Meats (1960’s)
  • Hookers & PDC created a joint venture (1976)5
  • Hookers owned outright (1978) operated as Norwest Beef Industries Limited5


  • Seasonal operation killed May to September1
  • Average turnover was 30,000 hd cattle1
  • 45 yrs of public operation ran at a loss, sold 19661
  • Was export accredited – received cattle from NT prior to 1959 (when Darwin and Katherine) built1



  • JJ Holmes – Member for East Fremantle, member of parliament, at time Commissioner of railways – talked of long range solution to tick problem was formation of freezing works and chilling works at Wyndham. Pg 1777


  • Talk of forming syndicates for chilling and beef-extract works in Wyndham. Pg 2057
  • Richard Tilden – British promotor who had been involved with failed mining schemes in Kalgoorlie, tries to raise capital to establish a floating abattoir.Pg 2337


  • Properties from Kimberley were loading cattle at Wyndham for delivery to Robbs Jetty abattoir (WA), SS Mildura had run aground at North-West Cape and caused drowning of all 700 cattle aboard. Pg 2377
  • Kimberley pasturelands was producing more cattle than WA state could consume and were walking cattle overland to Queensland abattoirs.Pg 2367
  • James Mitchell, Minister for Agriculture promises provide two thirds of cost of construction of works at Wyndham. 40-50,000 pounds. Interest free for first 5 years and thereafter on gaurantee of 5%.Pg 2377
    • People weren’t happy with the meatworks receiving assistance.7

“Why should rich firms like these get large sums of government money free of interest whilst a struggling farmer can get no more than 500 punds and pay 6% for it” West Australian Newspaper.Pg 2377


  • Techinical advisor of a large freezing works in Syndey investigates Wyndham proposal and advises cost to be minimum 100,000 pounds, 25,000 above original estimate.7
    • expert estimate included Jetty and supply of fresh water sourced 20 miles away from site7
    • Government withdraw support of funding. Pg 2597
    • Michael Durack visits William Angliss, who owns meatworks in Footscray, Melbourne, Angliss advises Durack that excluding land the facility cost 50,000 pounds, including freezing, chilling, boiling down and preserving works. pg 2677
  • Bovril Australian Estates show interest in partnering building of Wyndham abattoir. Pg 2937
    • Bovril would latter build Bullocky point abattoir (NT) in 1917, which only operated for 3 years
    • Bovril had just taken up leases in 1908 Victoria River Downs in NT and Carlton near Wyndham.Pg 3157
    • Bovril also said to be considering purchase of a steamer to convert to a floating abattoir7
      • approached Australian government for assistance and wanted to use Asian labour, business would be conducted in Cambridge gulf and not infringe on White Australia policy of the time. Pg 3157
  • Government attempted to assist with cattle movement – as alternative to sea transport subsidised the development of the Canning Stockroute. Pg 3167


  • Kimberley cattle being sold for 3 pounds in Fremantle after shipping from Wyndham and Derby. Pg 3247
  • Live export was opening up to Philippines which would take light weight cattle. Pg 3247


  • Advisor to Bovril that suitable site for an abattoir was on property Auvergne. Pg 3427
  • Government surveyor Sanderson, advises on feasibility of abattoir at Wyndham, with water being sourced from various sources.
    • Project wasn’t an alternative to Manilla live export trade but would be advantage to ship frozen meat to avoid quarantine  problems with stock to be held prior to shipping.Pg 3437
  • If meatworks not established in 1912. Richard Tilden would undertake project at estimated cost of 25,000 pounds, not including water which government was expected to provide. Pg 3497


  • WA change of Government from Liberal to Labor – leader John Scadden. Withdraw support of Wyndham abattoir. Pg 3807
    • The government enter the Wholesale butchery business to reduce price of meat to public. Pg 3807
    • Government also take over shipping along coast. Pg 4377


  • NT government talk of establishing meat works in Darwin, this is not supported by WA producers though a meatworks in Katherine was. Pg 3917
  • Government had already commited to establishment of abattoir in Darwin.7


  • Vesteys sign a contract with government to establish meatworks in Darwin. Pg 4147Bullocky Point abattoir (NT)
  • Declaration of WW1 occured – WA government reconsider establishment of meatworks at Wyndham. Pg 4147


  • March. WA state government sign a contract with building group Nevanas for materials and to construct abattoir for 159,510 pounds. Pg 4217
  • Bullocky point abattoir (NT) construction is well underway. Pg 4287
  • July. Agreement between government and Nevanas ended and Wyndham abattoir construction again under review.Pg 428.7
    • Shipping space to Nevanas had been made unprocurable. Pg 4307
    • 3% of estimate had been paid. Pg 4307
    • government renegotiated with Public works to build abattoir, some materials already delivered to Wyndham. Pg 4307
      • No public tender called and reaction of public was unfavourable.Pg 4307
  • Government supply two more ships for coast transport of people and cattle7
    • N.2. prinz Sigismund – Kaisers private yacht – renamed the Bambra. Pg 4377
    • Kangaroo – new vessel, first diesel engined motor vessel. Pg 4377


  • Wyndham works making progress – mile from town, Water pool is located 20 miles out with 2 25,000 gallon tanks and pumping site.Pg 4417


  • Trade union strikes impeded progress of meatworks construction. Pg 4547


  • Meatworks costs now 723,000 pounds from original estimate of 155,150. Pg 4627
    • Debate on how the works was to be run, by the state or a joint enterprise. Pg 4627
    • Nevanas claimed they had the right to solely operate the facility. Pg 4627
  • Construction finished late in 1918, facility had an electric lift. Pg 4697


  • Constructed as a public meat works1
  • Meatworks to be operated under Government control7
    • Government offered producers 5-7 pounds less than other markets.Pg 4727
    • Post war markets and freighting costs were still indefinite.Pg 4727
    • Outbreak of pneumonic influenza forced quarantine – disrupted travel, delay in loading and unloading cargo.Pg 4737
  • Government resumed land held near abattoir, 60,000 acres, land was resumed forcefully including all improvements, living quarters, yards, fences and wells, from Duracks with no compensation. Pg 4817


  • VRD cattle (Owner – Bovril Australian Estates) were Wyndham’s largest supplier5
  • Angliss discuss with Durack possibility of leasing Wyndham works.7
    • Angliss has processed in Australia 1,250,000 sheep and 30,000 cattle. Employed 1,000 men at 4 pounds to 4pounds 10 shillings a week. Pg 4907
  • June. Works having difficulties – inexperienced workers and strikes for higher pay. Pg 494.7


  • VRD supplied one third of 10 568 head slaughtered this year5
  • Abattoir paid £3 1s 5d, compared to realised value on VRD for 4000 head purchased by Sidney Kidman, paying £4 2s 6d5Pg 118.
  • ‘condemns’ chuted to be processed as meatmeal – ‘political reasons’5Pg 144.

Note by Jo Bloomfield – Not sure what this statement was in reference too – think there was strife between the management and workers and more than usual number of condemned cattle occurring, Could also refer to the government overseers.


  • Japanese attacked Darwin, Government at the time were concerned if Japan invaded from the north that they would have a ready supply of meat and food therefore temporaily closed the meatworks down from this time to approximately 1949.6
  • Government also had landholders remove many cattle from northern properties and move south incase of invasion, so as to deny ready food source6
  • Cattle which had normally supplied this abattoir were now walked down the Murranji stockroute, eventually to QLD, 47,000 cattle in 1942, 30,000 from Vestey’s Wavehill alone. Demand for meat had increased on east due to Troops6


  • ‘Airbeef’ Cattle slaughtered on Glenroy station, meat flown to Wyndham and Derby for exports and freezing1


  • Abattoirs in the north were still operated ‘frontier mentality'(Pg 64)9
    • short processing seasons of 20-25 weeks9
    • largley itinerant labour9
    • Living and working conditions were dangerous9
    • Animal welfare standards were low9
    • Sanitation compiled to UK market standardsfor quarter beef, were well below standards for emerging US markets of boxed beef (Pg 64)9
  • US grinding beef market of the late 1950’s suited the cattle that were present in the north (Pg 64)9
  • Plants were encouraged to upgrade to meet USDA standards (Pg 64)9


  • Improved to meet stringent USDA (USA Dept of agriculture) hygiene regulations1


  • Wyndham Meats – Collective bargaining with Emanuel Exports, including Derby and Broome
  • UK agreement – quarter bone in carcases – meat was of inferior quality. Many condemned and processed into meatmeal5


  • Abattoir sold to private buyer1.


  • Entire plant is condemned for its wooden structure by USDA reviewer(Pg 64)9
    • Decision was extended to cover all Wyndham beef on the water and in the US9
  • Affected importers and exporters, Wasn’t covered by insurance (Pg 64)9
    • finanical fallout took many years to resolve.9
  • Connections in Eastern Europe and Austria came in to play (Pg 65)9
    • 1,000t of affected product still in Australia was picked up at Wyndham and sold to Romania, with health certificates9
    • Export statistics don’t show shipments to Romania for that year, apparently customs and DPI were not present at loading9


  • Couldn’t meet USDA standards – lost export licence, so did Broome, Derby, Darwin and Katherine1
  • Beef Crisis was taking effect, many northern abattoirs were losing money.9


  • Ray Fryer – Uranpunga, Roper Gulf (NT) – trucked his own cattle from property to works. 3 day round trip, 1100 miles, 22 bullocks or 20 cows, received $150/hd ($3000 total), cost $500 fuel. “It was the only way to get a bit of money coming in”4


  • Ian Mc Bean was sending load of cattle from Bradshaw, return of sale barely covered costs of sending the animals (Pg 122)8


  • PDC & Hookers created joint venture in attempt to rationalise the Katherine and Wyndham meatworks, outside shareholdings also purchased5


  • Hooker Corporation owned outright5


  • Export beef plant closed June 19851
  • Stayed open longer than other plants as was subsidised by the government3
  • Effluent from the works ran into a drain and straight into the sea, great burly for sharks (Pg 67)9


  1. ‘Sailing ahead’ Annabelle Coppin. 2009
  2. ‘The Australian livestock Export trade’ Nigel Austin 2011
  3. ‘Northern Australian Beef industry – Assessment of risks and opportunities’ ABARE 2012
  4.  ‘Red Dust Rising- The story of Ray Fryer of Urapunga’ Marion Houldsworth 2004.
  5. ‘The Big Run- The story of VRD station’ Jock Makin. 1970
  6. ‘The Murranji track – Ghost road of the drovers’ Darrell Lewis 2007.
  7. ‘Sons in the Saddle’ Mary Durack.
  8. ‘The privileged few’ Jeff Hill. 2008
  9. ‘World on a plate – A history of meat processing in Australia’ Stephen Martyn 2013