Oakey Beef Exports general manager Pat Gleeson overlooks the boning room. Oakey Abattoir opening of Bio-Gas plant Photo Bev Lacey / The Chronicle
Oakey Beef Exports general manager Pat Gleeson overlooks the boning room. Oakey Abattoir opening of Bio-Gas plant Photo Bev Lacey / The Chronicle Bev Lacey

Cattle train heralds $60M expansion at abattoir

BREAKING: For the first time in 23 years a train laden with cattle this morning will stop at Oakey Abattoir.

About 100 special guests including mayors from the Darling Downs and the south-west Queensland will greet the train.

When the train approaches, about 450 workers from the plant will put down their tools and march out to watch the historic event.

The chief executive officer of NH Foods - parent company of Oakey Beef Exports - Takea Kudo, is expected to make an announcement regarding the start date for a $60 million expansion at the abattoir.

That project will see staff numbers increase to 1500 within three years and capacity will jump to 600,000 head each year.

The stretch of rail line linking western Queensland with the abattoir at Oakey.
The stretch of rail line linking western Queensland with the abattoir at Oakey. Rebecca Vonhoff

The company was not previously able to expand unless more cattle from western Queensland could be sourced.

Cattle producers had been excluded from using the rail service, but a $2.5 million upgrade to the rail sidings at Oakey, Mitchell and Morven - plus a change to services contracts - meant cattle could be delivered to the abattoir.

The historic train arriving today will bring 880 bullocks and cows from south-west and western Queensland to the abattoir.

Previously cattle could only be loaded at Quilpie.

RAIL REVIVED: The rail line between Quilpie and Oakey, which will transport cattle to be processed ready for domestic and international markets.
RAIL REVIVED: The rail line between Quilpie and Oakey, which will transport cattle to be processed ready for domestic and international markets. Oakey Beef Exports

Queensland Treasurer Curtis Pitt has estimated the upgrade could create more than 4300 jobs and deliver about $1.3 billion in economic activity within the region.

Oakey Beef Exports processes animals for both the domestic and booming Asian market.



He tracked her car, called 200+ times daily after break-up

premium_icon He tracked her car, called 200+ times daily after break-up

MARK Jason Rogers was described by a judge as 'emotionally unhinged'

Council tackles climate change with bold new plans

premium_icon Council tackles climate change with bold new plans

ELECTRONIC cars, renewable energy and floating solar farm possible

Special history behind memorial shed burnt down by children

premium_icon Special history behind memorial shed burnt down by children

FOR some it may have just been a shed, but not for the O'Donnells

Local Partners