Manufacturing news briefs – stories you might have missed

Bega launches new Bega Cream Cheese

The Bega Cheese has launched its all-Australian Bega Cream Cheese range (pictured) which includes Spreadable and Block variants. The range is being produced at Bega’s iconic Port Melbourne site, the home of Vegemite, and at Strathmerton. The products can be found in Woolworths and independent stores immediately and in Coles from March 6. Made from Australian milk, Bega launched the products with a recipe for cheesecake which can be found on the company website.

Austal updates earnings forecast over contract losses

Shipbuilder Austal has reduced its earnings forecast from $100 million to $58 million for this financial year following a review of contracts to build Towing, Salvage and Rescue ships for the US Navy. Austal previously forecast a US$7 million loss on the construction of two of the vessels, subsequently revising that to US$11.6 million due to changes in specification and material qualities and cost inflation. The navy has exercised options for the construction of a further two ships, with Austal submitting Requests for Equitable Adjustment (REAs) of the contracted price due to these underlying factors. Austal has now released a further revised loss estimate for the programme of US$41.2 million should the REAs are not resolved. Successful resolution would reduce the extent of the likely loss.

Queensland government commits to bus manufacturing “bonanza”

The Queensland government said on Wednesday that it would boost the local manufacturing industry through building the state’s own buses. The government said it will conduct market sounding to assess industry capacity, with transport minister Mark Bailey saying the announcement would help to deliver on zero emission bus targets. “We have committed to seeing every new Translink bus be zero emission in South East Queensland from 2025, and in the regions between 2025 and 2030,” said Bailey said. He added that the diesel fleet emits over 12,000 tonnes of CO2 a month, and a staged implementation will see a 50 per cent reduction by 2030. “By making these new, electric buses here in Queensland we can ensure we meet these targets, while supporting good jobs for Queenslanders.” he added.

Future food contract manufacturing facility in Mackay a step closer

This week the Queensland government also announced that it is partnering with Cauldron, Asia-Pacific’s first large-scale precision fermentation manufacturing launchpad, to develop a business case, bringing closer a “world-leading Future Foods BioHub in Mackay”. The proposed facility “will provide the large-scale fermentation capacity needed by Future Foods fermentation companies to produce their products at scale” said state development minister Steven Miles. “The proposed $300 million facility will provide the anchor infrastructure Queensland needs to catalyse a new commercial-scale industry, complement the region’s agricultural and manufacturing strengths, protect existing jobs in the sugar industry, diversify the local economy and create new local jobs.” CSIRO estimates the national fermented future foods industry could produce close to $1.1 billion worth of retail products and up to 2,020 jobs by 2030.

Golden Plains Wind Farm wins PFI award

The Clean Energy Finance Corporation-backed Golden Plains Wind Farm has been named Asia Pacific Renewables Deal of the Year in the annual Project Finance International (PFI) Awards, which recognise “excellence and innovation in project finance transactions” globally. The CEFC, which has committed up to $175 million to develop Stage 1 of the wind farm near Geelong – its single largest investment in a wind project — congratulated the project on its award. The organisation said its investment drew in an additional $1.8 billion of private sector capital, including 100 per cent equity from clean energy investor TagEnergy, in its first Australian investment.

Picture: Bega Group

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