Northern Australian, Victorian processors join forces

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Victoria Valley Meat Exports (VVME), Gippsland, has joined forces with a Northern Australian processing company to form a new operation.

Victoria Valley Meat Exports (VVME), Gippsland, has joined forces with a Northern Australian processing company to form a new operation.

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The Koyu and Polovinka families have formed Central Agri Group (CAG), a unique national meat processing company, which includes multiple processing plants, large scale farms, feedlots and live export depots.

CAG will come into operation on January 1, with Victoria Valley and Joanna Plains to be the two cornerstone assets of the group.

“The Victoria Valley plant in Gippsland, is the blue print for modern processing in Australia, something our group is very proud of and will continue to be a leader in the adoption of new technology,” Rami Koyu said.

“This includes a $7 million state of the art boning room development in 2018, which will increase employment by 90-100 people.

“Modern, medium sized export meat plants can often be more competitive than larger processing plants as we can be more flexible through the adoption of new technology.” 

CAG was hoping to re-open the Myrup, Western Australia, abattoir as early as February, after buying it from Shark Lake Food Group.

Rum Jungle, Batchelor, NT, and Joanna Plains, Cataby, WA, expected to follow shortly after.

Shark Lake Food Group, co-owned by Rami Koyu, John Wildberger and John Reed,  went into administration in May, after record lamb and beef prices resulted in a ‘difficult time’. 

CAG partner Peter Polovinka said the company would have meat processing operations in Victoria, Western Australia and Northern Territory.

Rum Jungle, Batchelor, NT, and Joanna Plains, Cataby, WA, expected to follow shortly after.

”CAG will continue to focus on, and develop close relationships with producers, and will continue to develop our brands and value-adding opportunities to deliver higher returns to our farmers,” Mr Koyu said.

Mr Koyu and Mr Polovinka thanked loyal supporters of Victoria Valley Meat Exports and reassured customers, suppliers, agents and farmers that they were fully committed to continue to grow our Gippsland supply chain and export markets.

“None of this would have been possible without the support of the Baw Baw Shire and the local community, including a special thanks to the Giles family for their ongoing support,” they said.

“It’s a fresh start for Victoria Valley and our Gippsland business in the New Year,” Mr Koyu said.

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