Koroit cuts continue MG's fall from grace

Murray Goulburn's Koroit factory.
Murray Goulburn's Koroit factory.

The knife that earlier closed three Murray Goulburn plants in Victoria and Tasmania this week came to Koroit.

After being spared in a restructure that will close the Kiewa and Rochester plants in northern Victoria and Edith Creek in Tasmania, the Koroit plant this week joined the many victims of MG’s disastrous decision to slash its farmgate milk price in April last year.

That decision came after MG’s forecast high milk powder sales to China were not realised and unfavourable changes in the exchange rate led to ongoing hardship on farmers.

It also has MG’s former managing director Gary Helou before the Federal Court for allegedly misleading farmers and numerous bidders including Fonterra making offers to buy the ailing company that lost $371 million in 2016-2017.

MG said the elimination of 60 tanker driver positions, plus a number of support roles, across the state was “a continuation of efforts to address MG’s cost base, improve efficiencies and ultimately increase earnings and the farmgate milk price. 

“To minimise the impacts on our people, we will be seeking to make changes to rosters and offering voluntary redundancies in the first instance.

“MG will support employees by providing access to career transition and redeployment services,” a company spokesman said.

A Transport Workers Union spokesman said the redundancies were a surprise to it and there had not been much discussion about retrenchments before the announcement.

MG will hold its annual general meeting on October 27 when it’s expected it will flag its responses to the bids for all and parts of the business.