Article by: Hari Yellina
A crucial investment by one of Australia’s and New Zealand’s leading food producers is boosting job opportunities in Ballarat. In the Ballarat West Employment Zone, George Weston Foods will commit $132.9 million in a new flour mill. It will produce 174 new employments in Victoria and relocate 46 positions from a North Melbourne flour mill to Ballarat, with an extra 320 jobs created during the mill’s construction. Don smallgoods, Abbotts, and Tip Top bread are among George Weston Foods’ well-known brands. Martin Pakula, the state’s minister for Industry Support and Recovery, said that the project had received financial assistance from the state government, but declined to specify the amount.
George Weston Foods is also expanding its horizons in regional Victoria by establishing a new national Tip Top boutique bakery in Bendigo and modernising its Don KRC company in Castlemaine in order to increase exports. Stuart Grainger, CEO of George Weston Foods, stated that the new mill will be the most environmentally friendly of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere. “The mill itself will be cutting-edge in terms of ultra-low power consumption and processing efficiency. There is nothing else like that, in my opinion “he added. “It will have a substantially smaller footprint than anything else of its kind. “There will be no wastage. Anything that isn’t used for human consumption will be utilised as animal feed.
Mr. Grainger said that the company’s bread and baked goods were virtually entirely derived from Victorian farms. “We’re ecstatic to be investing in Victoria’s future of sustainable agriculture and food production,” he said. “In terms of products, people, and customers, the state is unquestionably a hub for the food business.” Mr Pakula’s visit to Ballarat included a stop at Sovereign Hill, the region’s most popular tourist attraction. The state government’s Regional Tourism Investment Fund announced $6 million to create new cultural and event spaces against the backdrop of the attraction’s iconic gold panning area.
The Waterside and Wadawurrung Cultural Precinct will be among the new places, encouraging tourists to learn about traditional owners. The two-year project, which is expected to be completed in mid-2024, would create up to 69 construction jobs and 11 permanent jobs. Mr Pakula stated, “This investment is a true vote of confidence in Sovereign Hill’s future.”