Rail sidings throughout the western Queensland have enabled the reopening of an old disused branch line for the expansion of the Oakey Beef Exports facility near Toowoomba, south east Queensland. Oakey Beef Exports secured a deal with the State Government earlier in 2016 to upgrade the underutilised rail track between Quilpie and its meatworks.
Win win situation
The rail line represents not only a big win for the NH Foods, the owner of Oakey Beef, it also represents a big win for all involved. The project provides additional regional employment, greatly reduces road transport traffic and improves safety on the already overtaxed western highway while delivering greater efficiency, export solutions for producers and improved animal handing in stock transport operations. The project helps to re-establish the cattle trading from southwestern regions of Queensland to Oakey.
Wiley’s Managing Director Tom Wiley, Chief Operating Officer Robert Barron and Business Operations Manager Michael Matthewson attended the opening of the railway, with the first shipment of cattle in 23 years arriving loaded with 880 head of cattle delivered right on time from Quilpie. Tom mentioned that it was an emotional moment for all attendees when the train arrived.
Today the Oakey plant has capacity of around 1200 head per day, but the NH Foods CEO announced an upcoming investment for the Oakey Abattoir of $60 million to ultimately double its output in the near future.
Wiley Managing Director, Tom Wiley said “Congratulations Oakey Beef Exports, we were honored to be at Oakey on the day to celebrate this addition to Oakey infrastructure and hear about the future of the company, who are dedicated to the local community, and regional economic development.”