Imperial Tobacco’s Largest Petone Plant Will Offer 50 New Workplaces

April 6th, 2012 00:00

Big Tobacco is enlarging significantly in Lower Hutt as Imperial Tobacco’s largest Petone plant prepares to send about 4 billion cigarettes per year to Australia. The leading factory in Richmond St will be boosting its exports across the Atlantic Ocean and offering 50 new jobs, with a two-year , $45-million increase.

Five advanced manufacturing lines represent German machinery able to produce more than 8000 cigarettes per minute- approximately half a million within an hour. The number of workers is growing from 70 to 120. The main part of Imperial’s cigarettes are produced in Sydney by British American Tobacco (BAT), however the agreement expires in June, with Petone set to benefit. Packages of about 40 cigarettes of such brands as Davidoff, JPS and Horizon will be made in Lower Hutt and exported to Australia.

New Zealand tobacco market

Factory chief Michael McInnarney, who has operated there for more than 10 years, stated employees have worked without a cease in order to persuade BAT that it worthy of a greater investment, which could have in any way gone to some Asia country. “We have examined various places, but thought that it would be logically, even for transport cost to open it in New Zealand. To say the truth, a lot of employees have been working their balls off to lead ourselves where we are seen by the group as able of get down to additional production,” stated Mr. McInnarney.

The number of smoked cigarettes in New Zealand has dropped with each consecutive year, from more than 6 billion registered in 1980 to 2 billion in 2011, according to estimates presented by the Statistics NZ. The decree has successively raised taxes as well as limiting sales and marketing.

Additional Facts:

• Petone’s cigarette plant started its activity in 1928 by W D & H O Wills and has been acquired by Imperial Tobacco in 1999.

• Bundles of dried tobacco, which are similar to Weet-Bix, are imported from such countries as Laos, Brazil and Zimbabwe to be further moistened and mixed with other tobacco sort or flavoring before being turned in millions of cigarettes a day.

• A $45m increase, on track for end in June, will lead to a raise in volume of cigarettes intended for Australia from 1 billion to 4 billion a year, which is almost a double of the whole New Zealand tobacco market.

• This plant also manufactures nearly 800 tones of rolling tobacco per year.

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