Wednesday, May 30, 2012

AAco to proceed with acquisition of land for Darwin Meat Processing Facility

AAco has decided to proceed with the acquisition of the site at Livingstone Farm for a price of $13.275 million, subject to satisfaction of conditions precedent with settlement expected to occur by late June 2012. The Company is confident that outstanding conditions precedents will be satisfied shortly and then the contract can proceed to completion.

In May 2012, AAco announced that it had received an Exceptional Development Permit (EDP) approving the development of an abattoir south of Darwin. The approval contains 5 conditions precedent that must be met to enable the development to proceed. The Company has satisfied itself that these EDP conditions precedent have either been met or are capable of being met as part of the final development and approval processes.

The Livingstone site is approximately 600ha in size, of which approximately 14ha will be occupied by the abattoir. The balance of the site will comprise irrigation zones, natural wetlands, ponds and other areas providing facility and amenity to the site. The additional land purchased will ensure a sufficient buffer zone between the abattoir and adjoining areas.

CEO of AAco, Mr David Farley, said: “The project fundamentals around a processing plant in the Northern Territory are compelling, and will secure the long term future of Australia’s northern pastoral industry.”

“The economic benefits extend well beyond northern Australia and we believe will also have substantial positive flow on effects for our northern neighbours,” Mr Farley said.

Subject to final project endorsement by the AAco Board to proceed with the development, the proposed Darwin Meat Processing Facility will be developed at a total estimated capital cost of circa $83 million (including land). This plant will be built as a Hot Boning plant with flexibility to incorporate chillers when required, and a design capacity of up to 225,000 head pa. It is proposed that the plant will process circa 180,000 head pa once full production levels commence.

The project is forecast to meet return criteria established by the AAco Board. The Board will review the final tendered delivery costs prior to construction commencing to ensure these benchmarks are achievable.

While AAco is prepared to invest 100% of the required capital, the Company will seek investment partners in the facility and will hold a minimum of 50% of the equity in the company developing the Darwin Meat Processing Facility, “Northern Australian Beef Limited”, which is currently a wholly owned subsidiary of AAco.

The new facility will be state‐of‐the‐art and when operational, will have the capacity to process up to 1,000 head per day at full production, create up to 260 full time jobs including substantial new opportunities for indigenous and female workers in the region. It will be efficient from a carbon emissions standpoint, and improve animal welfare outcomes.

Mr David Farley said, “A possible move by AAco into meat processing is a natural next step in vertical integration, particularly given our proximity to the growing Asian markets and the quality of our end product.”


Saturday, May 26, 2012

Dundee gets behind cancer research

The small community of Dundee has got behind Australia’s Biggest Morning Tea, raising more than $700 for cancer research and support.

The community raised almost $2 per local resident – if their efforts were repeated across Australia that would equate to around $44 million for this great cause.

The Biggest Morning Tea was held at Dundee Beach Markets today with freshly baked cakes and slices from local cooks.

Organiser Tracy Jones said it was a great effort from such a small community.

“Our community really got behind the cause to support cancer research and services,” she said.

“It was a mammoth effort and a real testament to what individuals can do when we get together.

“Virtually every one of us has been touched by cancer at some stage and Australia’s Biggest Morning Tea gives us all an opportunity to say thanks to those who have been there for us when one of our own family or friends has been affected by this terrible disease.”

Australia’s Biggest Morning tea is an annual event and the community of Dundee is already planning its event or next year.

“We’ve had great support from local businesses, including the Lodge of Dundee, Dundee Boat Hire and the Dundee Beach Tractor Pull,” Tracy said.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Vista Gold Corp. reports drilling and test results for historic heap leach pad at Mt. Todd

Denver, Colorado, May 16, 2012 - Vista Gold Corp. (TSX & NYSE MKT: VGZ) (“Vista” or the “Company”) is pleased to announce the initial results of a sampling and metallurgical testing program on the existing heap leach pad at its Mt. Todd gold project in Northern Territory, Australia.

To date, the existing heap leach pad has been considered an environmental liability; however, as part of the ongoing feasibility study, Vista completed a review of the historic blast hole and production data associated with the heap leach pad and concluded that there may be potential to recover additional gold from the existing heap leach pad.

Fred Earnest, Vista’s President & CEO, stated “the drilling and subsequent bottle roll test results from the existing Mt. Todd heap leach pad are causing us to consider some new aspects of the Mt. Todd gold project.

The potential to convert what we had previously considered to be a brownfield site liability to a potential revenue generating component of the project could represent a potentially significant source of additional value.

We are in the process of evaluating the potentially favorable implications and timing of gold production from the existing heap leach pad and believe that the heap leach pad should be incorporated into the definitive Mt. Todd feasibility study. We are currently evaluating the impact this may have on our current feasibility study.”

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Pop icon to launch Private Pop exhibition

International singer-songwriter, Leo Sayer will launch an exhibition of prints and ephemera from the sixties and seventies in Darwin this week.

The exhibition showcases the personal art collection of locally-based artist Geoff Todd and includes prints by Andy Warhol and Sydney Nolan, an original painting that became a Leo Sayer Album Cover 'Just a Boy', pop memorabilia and his own works.

The catalogue for the “Private Pop” exhibition is based around a discussion recorded in Bali between Geoff Todd and Leo Sayer Leo about art, fans and idols and living through the sixties to the eighties with "art awareness".

Having met in 2006, the two artists now consider themselves to be close friends who share an intellectual connection and understanding of what art is about.

Todd says that he and Sayer were similarly art trained, the same age and seemed to share the same interests over their lives, “we seemed to connect”.

“Together we have worked on lots of things and shared ideas and compared life notes and influences. One of the outcomes has been the exhibition "Private Pop" which happily has found its way to Darwin.”

The collection is not for sale however the limited edition collectors book can be bought and signed by Sayer and Todd.

“Private Pop” will be on exhibition until 31 May at the Vault Gallery, 51 Smith Street from 10am - 4pm weekdays.