Located adjacent to the Isis Central Sugar Mill near Childers, Oreco is Australia’s largest producer of a range of mulch related products catering to garden and livestock feed requirements.
Business Development Manager Amber Gilbert said the company had come a long way since the days when it sourced local cane trash for conversion to sugar cane mulch.
“With the factory now producing a catalogue of over 100 products, storage and transport are key areas where we are lifting our efficiencies,” Amber said.
“We recognised this some time ago and even though the transport hub was planned as a future addition to the factory site, we have been able to bring construction ahead by three years.
“The hub is a part of the $20.8 million expansion the factory has undergone over the past couple of years. Support funding has been made available through both the State and Federal Governments.
“Having this transport hub provides a dedicated, all-weather site where we can ship and, in return, receive backloads of items required for production or even assist other local industries with the transport and storage of their goods.”
Transport hub manager Ash Murphy said the transport hub, which can house more than 8000 pallets of product, would operate on a 24 hour basis.
“Construction commenced in November last year and we expect completion by the end of next month,” he said.
“In this hub we have a facility where we can simultaneously service four B-Doubles with three of those under cover and handle 30 vehicle movements per day.
“We have our own fleet of seven b double trucks servicing our customer outlets and transport distribution centers to the north and south of the state.”
Among the new products recently developed at Oreco are chopped lucerne and cereal hay stock feeds. The product is available as a 220kg mega bale, down to a tiny 2kg bale, and producing all sizes in between.
“All forage feed products are supplied locally from Greensill farms,” Amber said.
“We recently installed a de-barking machine which strips bark off logs allowing for cleaner pine shavings for use in various products.
“The bark is recycled into our potting mix products, and the log is shaved and repurposed into animal bedding.”
As Oreco gears up for the pending crushing season, Amber said a current focus of the company is sales and marketing for its new products.
While Bunnings remains a major client Oreco is currently looking to bring on board other major retail customers.
”Watch this space is all I can say,” Amber said.
Amber said Oreco Group was aware of changes in the sugar industry with production seemingly on a northwards drift.
“We have a great arrangements with growers around this region but should we need to source increased quantities of cane trash, opportunities exist up around the Mackay area which we currently utilise.”
Amber said the company was extremely proud of the footprint it had been able to establish in the Bundaberg Region.
“We currently employ in excess of 60 mostly local workers and the new hub is going to offer further job opportunities.
“Oreco has a long-term investment here and it is here in the Bundaberg Region where the company will continue to be based. We have a commitment to this area which is as solid as the hundreds of metres of concrete that support this site.”