The first stage of the $35 million milk factory to be built at the Toowoomba Wellcamp Airport industrial estate will get underway in early 2018.
Toowoomba Premium Milk’s executive chairman, Steve Laracy, told delegates at last week’s Northern Australian Dairy Conference that the big attraction to building the factory at the Wellcamp Industrial Estate was the ability to move fresh milk from factory chillers directly onto cargo planes bound to any destination in Asia.
“It makes it an ideal location for us,” Mr Laracy said.
He said being established at Toowoomba Wellcamp Airport would open up freight routes to Asia, and would give the company an advantage over the milk processors trying to export out of more constricted airports.
Mr Laracy said the first stage of Toowoomba Premium Milk’s project would be the manufacture of Queensland’s first dry mix infant formula and he expected it would be operational in late August to early September.
Toowoomba Premium Milk aims to produce more than 30 million tins of infant formula destined for the Asian markets.
“The fresh milk facility capacity will be added in stage two of the project with other capabilities including UHT milk and powder production,” Mr Laracy said.
Mr Laracy said it was planned to begin processing the first fresh ‘wet’ milk through the factory within two years.
“Our aim is to start with a throughput of about 50,000 litres a day and progressively ramp up to 500,000 litres a day,” he said.
“Only the fresh milk would be air freighted.” .
“There is demand for fresh milk in significant volumes not just into China, but throughout the Asian region.
“And moving product direct from the factory to our customers will be a huge advantage.
“The dry milk formulas will go to the Port of Brisbane using the Second Range Crossing without having to encounter a red light.”
Mr Laracy said the stage two wet milk facility would source milk from the existing farming community, plus establish it’s own dairy to give it a ‘premium’ to identify with year round fresh milk – ensuring continuity of supply.
Mr Laracy said the plan would see the business establish a fully integrated dairy farm south of Toowoomba to supply half the fresh milk requirements of the facility