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GD Pork was founded in 2007 as a way to combine international expertise in pork production, with the clean and green environmental benefits of primary production in Western Australia.

“We decided to establish the business in Australia,” says Torben Sorensen, GD Pork’s owner and Managing Director, “given the huge opportunity that was available if we did things right.”

“These opportunities included the availability of quality land, large grain production and WA’s proximity to growing Asian markets.”

“We have invested heavily in our two farms, our production systems and our animals, and we’re very proud to say that our farms are recognised as being among the most modern and efficient in Australia.”

Around 75 per cent of GD Pork’s product is exported to Singapore, with this increasing demand driven by the high quality of the meat and the company’s rigorous focus on food chain security.

“We’ve exported to Singapore pretty much since we started 10 years ago,” says Torben.

“In many ways, Singapore is an extension of the Western Australian domestic market, as it is just as close to us as Melbourne or Sydney.”

An expansion strategy

In 2013, GD Pork added an additional farm at Australind to the two that it already owned, which allowed it to increase its breeding capacity, as well as establish new farrowing and mating facilities.

The next step in this expansion strategy was to modernise its two existing farms in Pinjarra and Kojonup.

“What we’re planning is really the newest technology worldwide in pig farming,” says Torben, “with a controlled climate for our pigs, so that we can cool them down when it’s really hot.”

“These changes will also allow us to provide specific diets directly to each individual pig, as well as helping to reduce the hard labour that's involved as well.”

“We’re also putting in our own feed mill, so that we can produce our own feed, along with what we call a bio-gas treatment plant,” adds Torben,
“This treatment plant allows us to take the waste from the pigs and create electricity that can be used on the farm.”

“It’s a major step forward for our business, both for saving costs on energy but also for waste treatment.”

Positioning for the future

The total value of this expansion project is $24 million, which has made managing cashflow through this process quite a challenge for GD Pork.
“While we need to expand, we also need to run our existing business at the same time,” says Torben, “so getting the timing right with our finances has been crucial.”

“A little delay that doesn't seem like a big thing at the time, can be quite costly down the track.”

GD Pork’s bank was very supportive of its expansion plans, and was able to provide a large proportion of the required funding.

There was a shortfall, however, and so its bank referred GD Pork to us to see if we could help.

“Efic’s Export Contract Loan has been very important for us,” says Torben, “as it’s helped us to grow our stock and fulfil the growing demand from Singapore, while our expansion project was underway.”

“Scale is a massive advantage in our business, so getting this project finished means that we can produce more consistent product, which allows us to develop new markets, both here and overseas.”

Efic were great to work with, and their willingness to help when some timelines changed made such a difference. Torben Sorensen, Founder and Managing Director, GD Pork

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