$1.8M IN GRANTS A SWEET TREAT FOR LOCAL MANUFACTURING INDUSTRY

Four local companies hailing from Coolum, Kunda Park, Buderim and Yandina will share in more than $1.8 million worth of Federal Government support to help modernise their manufacturing businesses and create jobs in our region amidst the Coronavirus crisis. 

Federal Member for Fairfax Ted O’Brien made the local announcement today.

“$922,000 in funding will support Tumbuh Pty Ltd to install an advanced bioreactor facility for the production of live biotherapeutic products at its new premises in Coolum,” Mr O’Brien said.

“The Kunda Park based Country Chef Bakery Co is getting $562,000 to help automate a new line of bakery and cake products, creating 26 new direct and 4 indirect jobs in the process.

“Yandina’s Epicurean Products will use its $295,000 to invest in state-of-the-art equipment for the rapid development and flexible manufacturing of high-quality fresh dressings and sauces.

“While Buderim’s Kokopod, known for its award winning, hand crafted chocolates is set to benefit from a $54,771 Manufacturing Modernisation Fund (MMF) grant,” Mr O’Brien said.

Mr O’Brien said the support came at an incredibly important time for the local manufacturing sector.

“The Morrison Government is committed to Australian manufacturing and supporting small and medium sized businesses like these on the Sunshine Coast.

“This investment will not only strengthen these businesses and create jobs, it will provide a much needed confidence boost for the whole region as we face this unprecedented pandemic,” he said.

Brigid Woolnough said Kokopod not only produced award winning chocolate but was also about supporting other local producers.

“Chocolate is like the medium of choice to create these unique and exciting flavours and then we profile and showcase local producers from that, so for example the strawberries and raspberries we use are from a local company called LuvaBerry and then another company we use is Buderim Ginger,” Ms Woolnough said.

“The grant is really going to support us to scale up our business.  We have some products in the pipeline that we have always dreamt of having on a larger scale so this will enable us to create larger and more specified machinery which makes the products more economical to produce and hopefully we’ll get a bigger share of the market.

“I definitely think there’s an opportunity to at least double our staff,” she said.

200 projects worth more than $215 million dollars are being supported through the Manufacturing Modernisation Fund (MMF). The Federal Government is contributing $48.3 million.

Minister for Industry, Science and Technology Karen Andrews said the projects are expected to create 2,600 Australian jobs and were about preparing Australian manufacturing beyond COVID-19 and the challenges of today.

“We established the MMF before the coronavirus pandemic to help small and medium sized manufacturers invest in capital equipment and new technologies to transform and upgrade their manufacturing operations,” Minister Andrews said.

“Now as we face the coronavirus pandemic and look to come out the other side stronger, this investment will be more critical than ever.

“I am determined to further strengthen Australian manufacturing and the current pandemic gives us the opportunity as a nation to reassess and commit to the values of Australian-made goods.”

The MMF builds on other Federal Government investments in manufacturing growth and competitiveness, including the $100 million Advanced Manufacturing Fund, the Advanced Manufacturing Growth Centre, the Entrepreneurs’ Programme, and the $40 million Innovative Manufacturing Cooperative Research Centre.

For more information on the Manufacturing Modernisation Fund visit www.business.gov.au/MMF