The 11,000m2 plant, once fully operational, will employ 200 people and will double the company’s capacity.
At the official opening, attended by D’Orsogna management and Victorian Minister for Jobs, Innovation and Trade, Martin Pakula, the business outlined plans for the facility.
Managing director Greig Smith said: “We’ve taken a measured approach to such a substantial investment after establishing a modest footprint in Victoria 10 years ago at Mt Waverley. The new Merrifield production facility will secure the future of the D’Orsogna business.”
D’Orsogna chairman Tony Iannello said that the new Victorian facility would double D’Orsogna’s production capacity and “generate development opportunities for its extensive range of innovative ham, bacon and other meat protein products”.
“Proximity to major markets, streamlined manufacturing processes and state-of-the art equipment, all supported by well trained staff, a committed management and board and supportive customers should ensure its success,” Iannello said. “Productivity per square metre of floor space will be leading edge, allowing us to be competitive and satisfy growing consumer demand for fresh, conveniently packaged, modern meat protein products.”
He added that the site also has state-of-the-art environmental technology. “This facility incorporates the latest energy and water conservation technology, reflecting our focus on sustainable and efficient processes to drive design and ultimately production efficiency.
“The 8500 square metres of rooftop solar, powers a one megawatt system that will greatly reduce operational costs and carbon emissions on site.”
D’Orsogna already employs 550 people and produces a range of cured and cooked whole and sliced hams, gourmet continental goods, bacon and cooked sausages.
Its premises at Palmyra, near the port of Fremantle, has been D’Orsogna’s home since 1973 and will retain its head office status for staff and production.