D’Orsogna powering ahead
With demand for its Christmas hams and festive season smallgoods powering ahead, D’Orsogna’s Palmyra, Western Australia headquarters and its new state-of-the-art $66 million facility at Melbourne, Victoria, are operating at close to maximum capacity.
Managing Director Greig Smith said today that having established such a significant production base on the east coast had not only complemented production at Palmyra, but had quickly built and grown new markets in its first six months.
“While D’Orsogna has long been one of the most recognised brands at Woolworths, Coles, and Metcash and across major food service businesses, we’re now seeing substantial growth in some exciting new markets and from our valued traditional base,” Mr Smith said.
“This reflects not only our regularly refreshed product offerings, in terms of protein make-up and packaging, but also the stimulus and genuine sense of excitement for our valued staff, customers and consumers generated by our new Melbourne facility.”
The 11,000 square metre factory at Merrifield Business Park 30 km north of Melbourne, features 8500 square metres of rooftop solar panels, comprising 2816 x 370W QCELL solar panels with 34 Fronius inverters, which will generate 1 megawatt of power while reducing carbon emissions and saving close to $8 million over the 25 year life of the system.
D’Orsogna’s solar system, supplied and installed by Cherry Energy Solutions, was financially supported by an Environmental Upgrade Agreement from Hume City Council and Sustainable Australia Fund, the first in the region.
While acknowledging the importance of investing in such a sustainable clean energy system, Mr Smith said the real work of the business happened under the roof on the factory floor.
“Of course we’ve also been very focussed on sustainability and productivity on the factory floor, with various investments in resource use and environmental technologies, including automatic dosing of cleaning chemicals and water saving equipment, for example.”
While all on-site cold rooms and chillers are computer controlled and energy efficient, where additional chilled storage is needed, typically at peak production times such as pre-Christmas, D’Orsogna only partners with those chilled storage providers which have their own energy efficient chilled storage facilities.
Other technologies at the new facility include computerised production monitoring systems, robotic picking and packing equipment and finished good scanning and inventory management systems to maximise yields, production efficiencies and customer service.
Global searches were conducted for the best available equipment with, for example, next generation slicers sourced from Germany.
Approximately 70 per cent of the floor space is allocated to production, including raw meat lines, smokehouses, chillers and cartoning.
The location was chosen to maximise access to arterial links and other essential services in Merrifield Business Park and the surrounding industrial precinct, plus proximity to major markets within Victoria, plus NSW, ACT, Tasmania, SA and Queensland.
“Essentially, the new facility offers the D’Orsogna business additional production capacity which will future proof the business for the years to come,” Mr Smith said.