Swickers back processing today after fire
WEDNESDAY, 9AM: Swickers Bacon Factory will be back open today, with the first load of pigs coming at 1pm.
TUESDAY, 9AM: SUNPORK Group has no intentions to slow down pork production following Sunday's pig abattoir fire in Kingaroy.
Group CEO and managing director Robert van Barneveld the company was in the process of moving stock to other parts of Australia.
"Stock is being moved to a variety of locations," Mr van Barneveld said.
"Moving stock from Queensland to other parts of Australia happens every day.
"There will be no change in those types of arrangements, there might be a higher volume.
"We still have our job do, the boning room is only one component of the exercise here."
Fire destroyed the export distribution centre, boning room and chillers at Swickers Bacon Factory on Sunday morning.
Dr van Barneveld said the company intended to have the processing floor operating within a week.
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He said SunPork, which owns the factory, would rebuild the parts damaged by the fire and intended to keep its current workforce.
"We need to assure all of our customers and staff that our intention is to minimise as much interruption as we can," Dr van Barneveld said.
While most employees will be back at work in Kingaroy, 25-50 staff members will be temporarily transferred to an abattoir in New South Wales.
"We don't have intentions to make people redundant," Dr van Barneveld said.
"We understand the importance of this facility to the local community and the local community is important to us.
"Some of our automated processes no longer exist so we might have a hire requirement for staffing in some areas.
"It really is about supporting the entire industry with our staff to ensure we have the capacity that's currently missing from this facility."
Swickers Bacon Factory processes about 18,000 pigs every week.
"The challenge at the moment is chilling capacity. That will dictate the rate we get up to full capacity," Dr van Barneveld said.
He said pork supplies in supermarkets would remain the same.
"One thing you can also be sure of with pork is that you can't turn off the tap," Dr van Barneveld said.
The factory is the only major export-grade pig abattoir in Queensland, and its 580 workers makes it a significant employer in the South Burnett.