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ViPlus growth backs community

Eager spectators: Welshpool’s Alan and Joyce Draper attended the ViPlus open day as their son Tim Mansell – who conducts maintenance for ViPlus- wanted his parents to see the impressive investments the company has made in its Toora factory. Mr Draper also gave a hand to the Toora Lions Club members who were providing attendees with a barbeque.

INTERESTED onlookers assembled at ViPlus Toora Factory – a company that produces locally made infant formula products – for the first ever public open day on Friday to celebrate job growth, new investment and its commitment to local Toora community groups. 

Viplus CEO Jon McNuaght welcomed attendees, saying it was great to see so many local faces and a few past employees from the previous ownership.

Tours ran during the day, offering the public an insight into the workings of the factory which now has a huge global demand for milk powder.

As a result of higher product demand, employment opportunities have also developed, with the company currently employing more than 50 employees – a 20 percent growth from 12 months prior. 

The milk powder products from Toora are now supplied to 16 countries around the world, with 80 percent of products sold to the dominant market in China.

Workforce expansion at ViPlus is expected to continue as the factory plans to export to the Middle East and more countries in Asia in future.

Investments will also be made into a new state-of-the-art production line to enable probiotics to be seamlessly mixed into the milk powder during production process to meet the growing international demand for nutritional milk based products.

New machinery will also be installed to assist with the production of smaller 35 gram sachet travel packs which have become an emerging trend across many of the company’s new Asian consumer markets.

Chris McKiernan, international sales and marketing manager, said, “ViPlus has been part of the Toora landscape for over six years now, and we feel that we are part of the fabric of not only the Toora community, but the Gippsland dairy community as a whole.

“We are very proud of the jobs we’ve created from what was an empty factory facility.”

ViPlus recently gave sizeable donations to Toora Primary School and Toora Football and Netball Club to illustrate the company’s commitment to the local community.

“We are growing and we are here to stay in Toora,” Mr McKiernan said.

Tours through the factory on Friday gave spectators an opportunity to observe the production process, as well as the implementation of recent high-technology machinery.

Len Ralph from Toora, who used to work as a tanker driver at the location when it was owned by British United Dairies during the 1960s through to the 1970s, was amazed by the transformation of the factory.

Mr Ralph said it was a massive change when can trucks were changed to tankers in the late ’60s, let alone the advancement in technology seen at the factory on Friday.

“It’s totally different,” Mr Ralph said.

He marvelled at the introduction of machinery that allows the company to prepare and pack thousands of cans effortlessly and efficiently each day.

Mr Ralph explained the process of how he used to load milk during the ’60s, laughing “every time I think of milk cans now my back aches!”

The company now looks forward to planned construction due to begin later this year on a new multi-million dollar spray drying facility onsite at the ViPlus Toora factory.

Big investments: ViPlus quality control manager Liz Heald showed interested onlookers how their new production line produces the packaging of infant formula products at ViPlus’ first ever public open day in Toora on Friday.
Production line: the public open day held at ViPlus last Friday gave spectators an opportunity to tour through the Toora factory and learn how new investments allow the company to prepare and pack infant formula products. The day also aimed to celebrate job growth and the company’s involvement within the local community.

Short URL: https://thestar.com.au/?p=28063

Posted by on Mar 27 2019. Filed under Business. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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