Eden chipmill ships off first load since bushfire shutdown

Allied Natural Wood Exports (ANWE) has started loading the first woodchip vessel to dock since the bushfires forced the Eden facility to shut down in early January.

MV Cattleya arrives in Eden as the first woodchip freighter to arrive since bushfires significantly damaged the mill in January

MV Cattleya arrives in Eden as the first woodchip freighter to arrive since bushfires significantly damaged the mill in January

The MV Cattleya arrived in Eden on Tuesday, May 12, and loading commenced Wednesday, making it the first of many vessels to return to Twofold Bay as the mill's operation is temporarily restored to near full capacity.

Much of the infrastructure at the Edrom Road woodchip mill was extensively damaged by the January 2020 wildfires that devastated the Far South Coast.

ANWE chairman Malcolm McComb said the business's determination to overcome adversity and its commitment to the industry and local community drove the fast return to operation.

"This is a great achievement and comes just four months after the bushfire damaged the site," he said.

"Significant works were carried out to make safe, clean up and successfully rebuild the infrastructure to allow us to bring our people back to work.

"The commitment and efforts of our staff and contractors, the support of the federal and NSW governments as well as our local government and community, have been the keys to our success."

Woodchip begins to be loaded on MV Cattleya, Wednesday, May 13.

Woodchip begins to be loaded on MV Cattleya, Wednesday, May 13.

This is not the first time ANWE has recovered from adversity, having reconstructed the loading facility in 2016 after it suffered significant storm damage.

"ANWE is a resilient business and the support we have received when we have faced adversity is a humbling reminder of our significance to the local community," Mr McComb said.

"We thank everyone who supported us through this challenging time, especially the many who were involved in the clean-up and infrastructure rebuild which have allowed us to restart our operations."

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