Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

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Victorian Deputy Premier Peter Ryan told workers at Campbell’s Soup last week the government was delighted to see enterprises such as theirs flourish.

CATHY WALKER March 11, 2014 4:00am

Campbell’s Soup plant manager at Lemnos Cass Green with soup bound for Japan.

‘‘People like you make that possible,’’ Mr Ryan said as he announced a $5million investment by Campbell’s in new plant and infrastructure that he said secured the future of 250 full-time jobs at the Lemnos factory.

Later, he said announcements such as this also made bank managers happy.

‘‘Everyone here has a mortgage or is paying off a car or school fees. When we have bad news stories the bank managers get anxious; news like today’s helps make everyone rest easy,’’ Mr Ryan said, nodding towards the Campbell’s staff in their fluoro orange shirts grouped around lunch tables.

The Lemnos management team beat Campbell’s Arnott’s sites internationally with its bid for the money that became available when a facility in the United States was closed.

The Victorian Government contributed $300000 out of its regional investment program Industries For Today and Tomorrow to support the $5million provided by the parent company.

Lemnos plant manager Cass Green said the money would be used in areas such as canning technology and labelling to increase its soup exports to Asia, particularly Japan and China.

‘‘We know that growing our exports to Asia is vital and to do that we have to trade at globally competitive prices,’’ Ms Green said.

‘‘I’d like to acknowledge the Campbell’s leadership team for their commitment.’’

The work installing the new lines has already been completed and Ms Green was able to show visitors cans of soup rolling off the production line labelled in Japanese and English.

A research and development team at Lemnos is working on more new products specifically for the Asian market.

State Member for Shepparton Jeanette Powell said the $5million injection in Campbell’s was a welcome vote of confidence in the Goulburn Valley.

‘‘Securing this project locally is further proof there is a bright future for food manufacturing in the Goulburn Valley,’’ Mrs Powell said.

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