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Vic Coalition announces $326,000 to help secure Fisher’s future in the Latrobe Valley

Friday, June 06, 2014

Acting Premier and Minister for Regional and Rural Development Peter Ryan today announced $326,500 in Victorian Coalition Government funding to help secure the future of Fisher’s pallet Manufacturers in Morwell.

Joining Member for Morwell Russell Northe in the Latrobe Valley, Mr Ryan said the funding would help Fisher’s undertake a $964,382 pallet and wood treatment upgrade project.

“Fisher’s is a family-owned Australian company focused on pallet manufacture and timber treatment which has been operating in the Latrobe Valley for 32 years,” Mr Ryan said.

“This upgrade to the facility will create jobs, increase production and sales and boost the plant’s efficiency. It will also maintain Fisher’s as a sustainable Latrobe Valley manufacturing business and improve the plant’s environmental footprint.”

Mr Ryan said the project would not only retain five jobs but create 10 new full-time jobs at the plant, another eight local contracting jobs and six construction jobs during the one-year building process.

“Fisher’s existing pallet clients are increasingly demanding the company’s manufactured Euro pallets, which boasts a more durable design offering greater product protection, complies with EU pest requirements, and has first-rate environmental credentials,” Mr Ryan said.

Russell Northe said to meet the increased demand for its pallets, and the impending higher demand of alternate methods of timber treatment, Fisher’s required significant investment in its plant and equipment to future-proof the company.

The project includes:

· re-engineering the timber treatment plant;

· installing two 150,000 litre rain water tanks and associated plumbing;

· installing a batch mixing tank for a water-based treatment system;

· installing of a new pack docking machine;

· upgrading the pack strapping system from one that uses steel straps to a plastic strapping system;

· modernising the electrical control system on the pallet line; and

· concreting the floor of the company’s 1400 metre square warehouse.

Mr Northe said Coalition Government funding for the Fisher’s Pallet and Wood Treatment Upgrade Project would be provided to Fisher’s (Latrobe Valley) Pty Ltd through the Latrobe Valley Industry and Infrastructure Fund (LVIIF) which is part of the $1 billion Regional Growth Fund.

“The LVIIF aims to facilitate new employment opportunities and leverage new private sector investment in the region,” Mr Northe said.

“The LVIIF is an initiative of the broader Latrobe Valley Advantage Fund that is supporting a number of activities to meet the initial transition needs of the Gippsland region."

Media contact: Sonia Heath 0413 485 526