A major dairy plant expansion in Jervois is set to bolster SA's regional economy, create jobs and cement the state's reputation as an industry leader.
Beston Global Food Company's $9.5 million Jervois dairy plant expansion has significantly increased their ability to produce lactoferrin - a glycoprotein derived from milk which is highly sought after in pharmaceutical and nutraceutical products because of its anti-bacterial, anti-viral, anti-parasitic and anti-allergic properties.
Beston Global Food Company chief operating officer Hamish Browning said the upgraded facility at Jervois would be able to produce six times as much lactoferrin.
"By expanding our dairy plant at Jervois we will be able to go from producing 3 mega tonnes of lactoferrin a year to 20 mega tonnes," he said.
"Lactoferrin has shown it has highly sought after anti-viral and anti-bacterial properties and international studies have shown it could help in the global battle against COVID-19 as well as other pharmaceutical benefits.
"We are proudly South Australian-based company and this upgrade made possible with the help of the state government's Regional Growth Fund will improve security for the local dairy industry as well as provide significant growth opportunities."
Primary Industries and Regional Development Minister David Basham said Beston Global Food Company received $2m from the fund towards the expansion.
"The South Australian dairy industry is world class and the team at Bestons are a great example of a proud local company leading the way," he said.
"The expansion of their dairy plant at Jervois is fantastic for SA's regional economy and importantly local jobs, with 30 new positions created.
"It's projects like this which are helping SA's strong economic recovery from the COVID 19 pandemic leading to us having the lowest unemployment rate in the state's history."
Mr Basham said since 2016, Beston had increased production from 17m litres of milk per year up to 155m litres, which had supported hundreds of local jobs across the supply chain.
"Our primary producers are always looking for innovative ways to grow the agricultural sector here in SA and we see another great example of that at Bestons, which now has the ability to produce lactoferrin at the expanded Jervois plant," he said.
"Lactoferrin is known for its anti-bacterial and anti-viral properties and is very high value for pharmaceutical and nutraceutical products.
"To have a South Australian-based company involved in such an innovative project is great for our state and the Murraylands region."
Member for Hammond Adrian Pederick said the Regional Growth Fund was supporting hundreds of millions of dollars of investment in the Murraylands.
"The upgrade at Bestons is another example of the SA government investing in regional SA and in particular the Murraylands," he said.
"Our Regional Growth Fund is stimulating unprecedented investment in local projects such as Bestons at Jervois, the new Thomas Foods abattoir, a state-of-the-art potato washing and packing facility at Parilla and a business park growth precinct at Karoonda.
"These projects are creating hundreds of local jobs and helping raise the profile of the Murraylands as a great place to live, work and play."
The state government has committed $160m across 10 years through the Regional Growth Fund to support regional South Australia as part of the Recharging Our Regions policy.
Applicants to the fund were eligible to seek grants from $50,000 up to $2m, with projects given preference if they could demonstrate a greater private-to-government funding ratio and strong economic outcomes.
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