UNDER what’s best described as a ‘soft start,’ the first few cattle have gone along the rail at the rebuilt Thomas Foods International processing plant at Murray Bridge in South Australia’s southeast.
TFI has now launched a major recruitment campaign targeting local job-seekers for the new world-class processing facility, which replaces a nearby plant destroyed by fire in 2018.
Construction of the facility is now complete, after some delays due to technical installation issues. Today’s trial throughput was described in a statement as ‘commissioning production.’
TFI is looking to build its production workforce quickly, with immediate starts available. The company is placing a strong focus on experienced and entry level production roles, and aims to achieve full production capacity “as soon as possible.”
The new plant at Murray Bridge, about 10km from the original plant, is the single biggest investment TFI has ever undertaken.
Since the first sod was turned in December 2020, the greenfield site has been transformed with building works on a structure reaching up to 10 storeys in height. Handover of the facility from project builder BADGE to TFI recently occurred, effectively marking the end of the construction phase.
As part of its commissioning program for the facility, TFI is carrying out detailed testing of all equipment and systems, including initial processing runs, with a date for the official opening expected to be announced in coming weeks.
Recruitment will be ongoing as production ramps up to 600 head of cattle per day, with up to 350 staff expected to be employed under Stage One of the new development.
TFI has already filled some of the skilled operations and senior positions, including the appointments of Murray Bridge Plant Manager Sam Jones, Senior Environmental Manager Elizabeth Cronje, Livestock Manager Hugh Walsh, Lairages Supervisor Sabrina Nottage and Head Chef Alex Thompson.
Thomas Foods International chief executive officer Anthony Stewart said the recruitment campaign was targeting locals from Murray Bridge and the surrounding area.
“Our focus will be on resourcing to support operations with the first commissioning phase processing taking place today,” Mr Stewart said.
“We will scale-up production in line with our workforce on-boarding. This is a unique opportunity to join a dynamic Australian company and work in the most modern and advanced facility of its kind anywhere in the world,” he said.
“Our new Murray Bridge facility has been designed with worker safety and comfort front of mind. From the large staff kitchen and recreational areas to the training rooms and work stations, it’s all first class.”
The company statement said it also provided industry leading pay and opportunities for supported training and professional development.
“This is an ideal time for anyone looking to kick-start or further their career in the growing global food industry. Whether experienced or completely new to the industry, we’re keen to hear from prospective staff.”
Positions currently on offer at the TFI Murray Bridge plant include:
- General processing
- Beef slaughter and boning
- Maintenance fitters and electricians
For information on the jobs available click here.
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