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Norco’s Lismore ice cream factory resumes operations after $100m rebuild

The Norco Lismore ice cream factory is back in business
(Source: Supplied)

The Norco Lismore ice cream factory has resumed operations following an 18-month recovery that cost more than $100 million, with 130 employees back on the job and its products returning to supermarket shelves.

The factory – which has a heritage spanning 128 years in the region – was severely damaged by the Lismore floods last year.

With the support of more than $40 million in Australian and NSW Government funding, the farmer-owned dairy cooperative has built a more modern and flood-resilient plant.

The new facility features flood-proof design and technologies that have equipped the site to defend against a 15-metre flood – higher than last year’s levels. 

“It’s been a challenging period for our cooperative, but we certainly wouldn’t be standing here today without all of their hard work, commitment, and belief in the vision for Norco,” remarked Michael Hampson, CEO of Norco. 

“We understand just how important the factory is to our workforce and the Lismore community and will remain future-focused on continuing to create opportunities for the region, maintaining a strong focus on innovation, jobs creation and investment in people.”

Senator Murray Wyatt, federal minister for emergency management, shared that the Albanese Government invested $20 million directly and close to $35 million jointly with the NSW Government to help secure the future of Norco’s operations because of its crucial role in the local community. 

“Norco is one of the region’s biggest employers, and seeing the doors reopen will be a big boost for the community,” he concluded.

“We’re pleased to work collaboratively with the NSW Government and Norco to help keep staff employed and rebuild the factory to be more resilient to future flooding events.” 

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