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Weatherill eyes northern jobs with Food Park announcement


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The State Government is poised to announce the location of a 40 hectare-plus food processing hub in northern Adelaide, which will be a centrepiece of its much-hyped Northern Economic Plan.

InDaily understands there were eight expressions of interest from developers, which insiders say could suggest one of two things: either there was significant interest in the proposal, or there are vast tracts of land going unused in the area with little development potential.

The final location is set to be unveiled ahead of a community cabinet meeting on Monday, but the “Food Park” will either be in the Parafield Airport Precinct or on a site at Penfield in the City of Playford.

The Penfield site is owned by SCT Logistics, a transport services company.

It’s understood a proposal by Walker Corporation for a site at Waterloo Corner was unsuccessful.

InDaily has been told the Parafield proposal provided export opportunities as it was serviced by planes, whereas the SCT site incorporates a rail line. The former was considered a better “short-term” location, with the latter a longer-term proposition, as it would require more infrastructure costs.

While the contract required 40 hectares of land be made available for a food processing hub, the site is likely to stretch beyond that stipulation.

The Food Park is likely to be a site for businesses such as Thomas Foods International, which recently signed a memorandum of understanding with Thailand’s CP Group to build an advanced food processing centre for ready-made meals to export.

Thomas Foods chief executive Darren Thomas believed the deal could lead to tens of millions of dollars of investment.

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