AN $8 million, three-year upgrade at Arnott's Group's Campbell's Soup plant in northern Victoria will enable a 30 per cent increase in production to service growing export opportunities.
The Shepparton site will boost the production of Campbell's stocks and soups by 16.5m kilograms each year and exports by 400pc.
The first stage of the upgrade came online in early December, with the extra production output destined for Malaysia, replacing product previously made in the US.
Although canned-soup consumption in Australia has flatlined, and even fallen in some categories, Asian demand has been growing, with new markets in Singapore, the Philippines and Thailand to be supplied from the plant.
It already exports to Hong Kong and Japan.
By June almost $4m in new machinery will be installed to enable the site to produce larger soup can sizes up to 1.4 kilograms, followed by a further $3.9m outlay on new equipment for non-canned products such as stocks.
"We have a rich history in Australian food-making, and this upgrade shows our commitment to making more delicious food right here," said Arnott's Group chief executive officer, George Zoghbi.
"We plan to be a regional powerhouse of food brands based in Australia, and Shepparton brings us closer to that goal."
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