Western Meat Exporters (WME) has received $4 million of funding through the Jobs and Regional Growth scheme to expand on their processing facility, which is the largest abbatoir in regional Queensland.
The expansion, which is expected to be completed by May this year, will focus on doubling the production capacity of the facility, increasing the 460,000 animals that are processed each year to 900,000.
The funding was announced after several Federal and Queensland Government officials visited Western Exporters on Wednesday, including Federal Agricultural Minister Hon David Littleproud MP.
WME owner Campbell McPhee said the expansion of the facility will allow for more than 60 full-time jobs for the community, further strengthening the local economy.
"We work really hard to employ locals, and we also rely on a large input from international workers, who are skilled and trained in this work," he said.
Mr McPhee also credited the state government on the maintenance and improvement of their goat and sheep meat strategy.
"Every now and then, credit needs to go where it is due, and the state government has done a good job of listening and investing in the sheep and goat processing space," he said.
"Currently, we are having great success exporting to the USA, however, we are always working on other export opportunities. When a business like ours does well, it means strong segments of the region are doing well."
Murweh Shire Council Mayor Shaun 'Zoro' Radnedge was also in attendance to welcome the visiting officials, saying that the well-timed expansion would significantly increase investment opportunities in the region.
"There is no better time than now to invest here," he said.
"It's created a perfect storm for investors in real estate and rental properties after the impact of the drought and then Covid contributing to no jobs."
Minister Littleproud also engaged in discussions regarding skilled labour shortages in the processing sector, as well as possible opportunities surrounding export.
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