VICTORIAN Mallee town Ouyen expects to increase its sheep saleyard throughput after a $111,000-plus upgrade that was officially opened yesterday.
The upgraded Ouyen Livestock Exchange has increased its number of selling pens from 58 to 84 with the installation of multi-configuration selling pens.
The new selling pens can be adapted in size to cater for different sale lines and they have been lined up with loading and off-loading ramps for better sheep flow.
The upgrade opened by Federal Member for Mallee Anne Webster yesterday also involved lighting over the yards and irrigation to occupational health and safety at the facility.
Federal Member for Mallee Anne Webster said the project had delivered more efficient saleyard with improved lighting and water delivery and expanded capacity. These upgrades will mean the livestock exchange stays viable into the future.
“This project has delivered a more user friendly selling facility, created employment opportunities, increased the revenue capacity of livestock farmers, agents and truck driverse.
“These outcomes will support our region well into the future.”
Chair of the Ouyen Livestock Exchange board, Howard Crothers, said the infrastructure upgrades will improve throughput, occupational health and safety and animal welfare.
“On behalf of the Ouyen Livestock Exchange board, it is with pleasure that we are able to officially open the OLE infrastructure upgrade.”
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack said the Australian Government’s $111,957 investment in regional infrastructure would provide long-term benefits to the far north-west of Victoria.
“This upgrade will ensure the viability of the facility for stakeholders and the community alike for many years to come by creating a safer, more user-friendly facility.
“By creating many ongoing jobs after completion right throughout the supply chain, this project will prove to be a huge boon for the regions primary producers, buyers and transport companies,” he said.
This project received $111,957 in funding from the Australian Government under the Building Better Regions Fund, with the Ouyen Livestock Exchange contributing $160,293 in funding along with $7000 of in-kind support.