Opal Fibre Packaging, a member of the Nippon Paper Group, has officially opened its new corrugated cardboard packaging facility in Wodonga, Victoria, Australia.

The facility was opened by Nippon Paper Industries‘ chair Fumio Manoshiro by unveiling a commemorative plaque made by Opal Specialty Packaging’s creative team

Opened during the country’s National Recycling Week, the facility will process recycled and kraft paper from Opal’s Maryvale mill in Latrobe Valley and its Botany mill in Sydney.

The factory, which has a total area of 55,000m², is equipped with high-speed packaging manufacturing technology.

It will manufacture packaging for various industries, including the fresh produce, fast-moving consumer goods, and food processing sectors, across Australia.

The site is also equipped with an automated waste handling system.

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Opal’s Wodonga site has been established with an investment of $140m, which includes the Victorian state government’s grant funding to support jobs at the facility.

Victoria Regional Development Minister Gayle Tierney said: “Our support for Opal’s new $140m investment in Wodonga is a huge vote of confidence for creating new jobs and doing business right here in regional Victoria.”

The company said that more than 450 direct and indirect employees, mainly from the local area, were engaged during the construction and machinery installation process at the facility.

Opal Packaging executive general manager Chris Daly said: “Opal’s Wodonga corrugating facility will be able to produce up to 720,000m² of high-quality, Australian-made cardboard packaging per day.

“That equates to approximately 100,000 tonnes of finished corrugated packaging a year. We are delighted to share the official opening of Opal Fibre Packaging Wodonga with a number of key customers, representing some of Australia’s most recognised and iconic brands.”

In alignment with its sustainability commitments, Opal’s new site incorporates water harvesting and has installed solar panels on its roof.

To minimise dependence on gas, the company uses a condensate recovery system, which recovers and reuses steam during the production process.