Opal says that its $140 million high tech corrugated cardboard packaging facility is on track to be completed and operational by October 2023, with capacity to produce 400 tonnes of finished corrugated boxes daily.
The facility is being developed in two stages. Stage one has included the construction of the highly automated manufacturing site, with a total footprint of approximately 55,000 square metres, with the equipment installation phase due to commence in April.
The site will receive more than 260 containers of equipment, most sourced from Germany, with some from France, Denmark and China. The new facility will feature enhanced supply chain capabilities and advanced manufacturing through the latest technology including: a BHS corrugator; Göpfert rotary die cutters; Bobst flexo folder gluers; Dücker/BDS automated work in progress store; a BCM tooling storage system; and a MOSCA strapping solution.
The site opening in October will mark the end of stage one, with stage two seeing the extension of the facility’s supply capacity to meet growth in demand.
Chris Daly, executive general manager, Opal Packaging, told PKN, “We expect to be running at full capacity soon after the facility is operating. Once running at capacity, the facility will be able to produce up to 720,000 square metres of packaging board per day, which is equivalent to almost 400 tonnes of finished corrugated boxes.”
Daly said Opal’s strategic investment in Wodonga was driven by market demand for superior, Australian-made recyclable packaging, with Wodongoa centrally located to service the Eastern seaboard.
The facility will use kraft and recycled packaging paper sourced from Opal's Maryvale Mill in the Latrobe Valley and its Botany Mill in Sydney. It will produce corrugated cardboard packaging to supply a range of fresh produce, food processing, FMCG and manufacturing industries across the country.
The company says sustainability is a core component of the site’s design and will include water harvesting capability and solar power to leverage the facility’s 41,000m2 of roof area.
“Opal’s Wodonga corrugated cardboard facility will enable us to increase our production, create new regional jobs and grow our customer base," Daly said.
He says Opal is committed to supporting regional jobs and once it is operating, the facility is expected to support more than 400 Victorian jobs including direct and flow-on.
Opal is currently recruiting for roles across production, safety, quality and maintenance and interested candidates can visit jobs.opalanz.com to review current opportunities at the Wodonga site, in addition to roles that are open at other Opal sites.