Agriculture business offers jobs to retrenched Stawell gold mine workers

Image: Stawell Times

Nectar Farms aims to provide job opportunities for the retrenched Stawell gold mine workers following the operation’s closure last year.

The company will receive funding from the Victorian government to provide 70 new jobs in Stawell, through the development of a large-scale high-tech hydroponic glasshouse facility.

It aims to provide jobs for affected workers of the closed gold mine.

Kirkland Lake Gold ceased mining at the Stawell operations in December, leaving 150 workers without a job. At the time, the company’s Australian operations president Darren Hall said the move to cease mining had been discussed over several years due to declining profitability.

Nectar Farms have obtained the land from Stawell gold mine – planning approval from the council – and will receive a grant from the government’s $500 million Regional Jobs and Infrastructure Fund for job creation.

The new food and fibre technology aims to develop a new industry sector in the region, using the latest hydroponic glasshouse and plant technology to increase yields and provide a stable supply of vegetables into both domestic and international markets.

Jaala Pulford, minister for agriculture and regional development, said it was “fantastic news” for Stawell.

“We’re thinking of the 150 retrenched workers in Stawell and working hard to facilitate new local job opportunities.”

Used Tyre Recycling Corportation (UTRC) also offered to employ some of the retrenched workers last year, as it attempts to reduce the massive used tyre stockpile in Stawell.