Western Australia grant to further Ord cotton processing

July 07, 2020 - Australia

The government in Western Australia recently awarded $100,000 to an East Kimberley grower cooperative to pursue cotton processing opportunities in the state's northern zones. The Ord River District Cooperative (ORDCO) will receive a Value Add Agribusiness Investment Attraction Fund grant to develop a business model and governance arrangements for a local cotton gin.

The proposal involves the production of local ginned cotton fibre that can be exported directly from Western Australia, instead of harvested cotton being trucked long distances to Queensland for processing.

The funding, which will be matched by ORDCO, will also support the preparation of a business case and investment proposal to build cotton processing facilities in the Ord Valley, according to an official press release.

Cotton seed would be retained locally, providing a significant value-add opportunity for the northern pastoral industry as a supplementary, local-origin feed source for cattle.

The expansion of cotton in the Ord has taken another step forward with a memorandum of understanding between ORDCO, Kimberley Agricultural Investment and MG Corporation setting out a proposed framework for ownership and management of a cotton ginnery.