Monday, July 15, 2024

Bega Group marks 125 years of rich history

Bega Group, a cornerstone of the Australian dairy and food industry, “proudly” celebrates its 125th anniversary. This milestone not only commemorates Bega Group’s rich heritage but also underscores its strategic growth, innovation, and future ambitions under the leadership of Executive Chairman Barry Irvin.

Bega Group Executive Chairman Barry Irvin.

Founded in 1899 as a local dairy cooperative in Bega, NSW, Bega Group has transformed into a diversified and dynamic food company renowned for its commitment to quality products and innovative practices. Today, Bega Group is a top ASX 300 listed company and one of the largest FMCG companies on the exchange, operating in over 40 countries with more than 34 brands. The company employs approximately 3800 people and generates annual revenue of over $3 billion.

Reflecting on Bega Group’s journey, Barry Irvin, Executive Chairman of Bega Group, comments, “As we celebrate Bega Group’s 125th birthday we feel very proud of our evolution from a small dairy cooperative to a diversified food company with a presence across Australia and around the world. This milestone underscores our commitment to innovation and quality. As an Australian-owned company, we stand for quality and integrity, embodying the values synonymous with Australian heritage.”

According to the brand, strategic acquisitions have played a pivotal role in Bega Group’s growth strategy, significantly strengthening its market position and expanding its product offerings. Notable acquisitions include the iconic brand VEGEMITE in 2017 and several other beloved brands such as Dairy Farmers, Dare, Farmers Union, Pura, Masters, Big M, Daily Juice, and Zooper Dooper through the 2021 acquisition of the Lion Dairy & Drinks business.

As part of its sustainability commitment, Bega Group has established the Regional Circularity Co-operative (RCC) to drive the ‘Bega Circular Valley 2030’ program. This initiative aims to establish the Bega Valley as the most circular regional economy in Australia by 2030. The RCC has garnered strong partnerships with the community, businesses, corporates, academia, and government to demonstrate transition pathways through pilots in the Bega valley and beyond.

One of the key projects under this initiative is the National Centre for Circularity in Bega, set to be built over the next two years. Funded by the NSW Government and Bega Group, this centre will showcase the circular economy transition of the Bega Valley, Bega Group, and other RCC partners, serving as a model for efforts across the country and internationally.

Mr Irvin said, “We are excited about the opportunities that lie ahead. Our strategic initiatives in new markets, innovation, and sustainability will pave the way for continued success in the years to come. At Bega Group, our heritage inspires us, but it is our vision for the future that propels us forward. We remain dedicated to upholding our legacy while embracing new challenges and opportunities.”

To celebrate its 125th anniversary, Bega Group will be taking over its hometown in Bega on 15 July with a ‘Toastie Town’ activation, offering free toasties featuring their iconic Bega Cheese and VEGEMITE spread to locals and those passing through. The event will be held at the Bega Heritage Centre at Lagoon Street, Bega NSW.

“Our success would not be possible without the support of Australia. As we celebrate this milestone with a toastie or two, we look forward to continuing to build on our legacy with new products and sustainable practices that meet the evolving needs of our consumers,” Mr Irvin said.

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