The creation of six new local jobs is just the start for Yeppoon food manufacturer Keppel Brand Products thanks to more than $370,000 in Palaszczuk Government funding.
Keppel Brand has been a successful local food manufacturer for more than 30 years, distributing convenience hot box food products to over 18,000 food outlet customers around the nation.
Visiting the business today, Minister for Regional Development and Manufacturing Glenn Butcher said Keppel Brand will use $372,148 from the Manufacturing Hubs Grant Program to purchase cutting-edge food processing and packaging equipment to expand their product offering.
“This new equipment will set up Keppel Brand to develop a new range of coated beef products for the Australian and export food service and retail markets,” Mr Butcher said.
“The equipment will also modernise the company’s existing manufacturing processes, making them more competitive and delivering more consistent products.
“While the company projects an initial six additional jobs because of the grant, this could potentially lead to further employment opportunities if the new lines are successful in the market.”
Assistant Minister for Education and Member for Keppel Brittany Lauga said supporting regional manufacturers was an important part of the Palaszczuk Government’s commitment to deliver jobs right across the state.
“The Palaszczuk Government is committed to Queensland continuing to be a powerhouse manufacturer, which is why we are investing in local manufacturers,” Ms Lauga said.
“The manufacturing industry contributes around $20 billion to the state’s economy every year, with nearly a third of that generated by regional manufacturing.
“More than 165,000 Queenslanders work in the manufacturing industry, with 24 per cent of those jobs in regional Queensland.
“More Queensland manufacturing means more jobs for Queenslanders and a stronger, more resilient local economy.”
Keppel Brand Director Mark Davie said the new product range will enable the company to expand into more markets including retail markets interstate and internationally.
“I want to thank the Queensland Government for this funding, which will better automate our processes and increase our product yield,” Mr Davie said.
“This project will help introduce more Australian beef into the takeaway, convenience and food service markets and with Central Queensland being home to the largest beef herd in Australia, we want to showcase our region’s best-known product.”
Mr Butcher said the $13.5 million Manufacturing Hubs Grant Program supports the regional manufacturing sector to implement and deliver world-leading technologies, processes and practices.
“Grants of between $5,000 and $1 million are available for eligible businesses to help build their manufacturing capabilities through technology adoption, skills and training business development as well as services through the Advanced Robotics for Manufacturing Hub,” he said.