31 May 2023

Originally published 17 December 2021
This article was updated to reflect changes in relation to the Australia-UK Free Trade Agreement (A-UK FTA).

Manildra Group: exciting opportunities in the UK market

‘As a family-owned Australian business, exports are critical for our growth and success. They increase our production of locally made products and create more jobs here at home.’
- Peter Simpson, General Manager, Manildra Group

Leading Australian manufacturer Manildra Group has an expansive history of trading with the UK.

It was the first Australian company to export gluten to the UK in the early 1970s.

Manildra Group has strong relationships with some of the UK’s major food companies. It is now exporting high-quality specialty protein products.

There is also strong preference for Manildra’s high-quality GMO-free and pesticide-free Australian wheat-based product range.

Prior to the Australia-UK Free Trade Agreement (A-UKFTA), it had been effectively restricted from the UK market. This is due to the prohibitive tariffs and quotas imposed on most of its products.

Free Trade Agreements are critical to opening up more markets

Under the A-UKFTA, there are great opportunities to grow Manildra Group’s exports to the UK. This includes expansion opportunities for its range of vital wheat glutens, modified proteins, wheat starches and its ethanol range in particular.

Peter Simpson, General Manager of Manildra Group, sees opportunities to build on existing relationships with UK companies. He also sees new opportunities in other industries such as food, aquaculture, pet foods, confectionary, paper and manufacturing, beverage, and pharmaceuticals.

Manildra Group is one of Australia’s biggest exporters from Australia’s largest container port in Botany, New South Wales. The flow-on effects from potential new deals in the UK will benefit farmers across Australia.

Manildra Group proudly partners with thousands of Australian farming families. They come from the heartland of New South Wales’ wheat belt to the lush sugarcane farms and golden fields of canola in the north. It converts this premium-quality wheat, sugar and canola into flour, glutens, starches, sugars, syrups, ethanol, oils and stockfeeds.

‘Export is at the heart of Manildra Group and is integral to our future,’ says Simpson. ‘We have been exporting food and industrial ingredients for more than 60 years to every continent in the world.’

Aerial view of Manildra Group's Shoalhaven Starches site located in Nowra, New South Wales. Photo: Dean Holland Aerial view of Manildra Group's Shoalhaven Starches site located in Nowra, New South Wales. Photo: Dean Holland

How Austrade has helped 

Manildra Group has a long relationship with Austrade. It is one that continues to grow and strengthen, says Simpson. 

‘Austrade is across the fluctuations in demand and business in overseas markets. Its services create exceptional opportunities for us to expand our product range and customer base. It provides us with real commercial value.’ 

Austrade does this by acting as the company’s eyes and ears on the ground overseas. 

Simpson adds: ‘Austrade has been and continues to be integral in helping us expand internationally. It facilitates connections, and provides exceptional market knowledge, advice and support.’ 

A family-owned business determined to support regional and rural Australia 

Manildra Group began in 1952 when the Honan family bought a flour mill in Manildra, in central west New South Wales. Today, the Group employs more than 1,000 people in regional Australia and overseas. 

It has offices in the United States, Korea, Taiwan, Philippines, Malaysia and Indonesia. These offices are managed by Country Managers – and on-ground staff in logistics and transport globally. 

Chairman Dick Honan leads the business alongside his children, Directors John Honan, Caroline Honan and Samantha Honan. They ensure their strong family values are embedded in all their operations. 

These values centre on a commitment to the sustainability of locally grown and manufactured products. This commitment has been the driving force of the Group’s growth in Australia and globally. 

Since the early days the Group diversified from the original flour mill. It value-added by producing premium Australian-grown industrial and beverage-grade ethanol, industrial and food-grade starches, vital wheat gluten, modified proteins, syrups, and animal stock feeds. In doing so, their world-class Shoalhaven Starches, in Bomaderry on New South Wales’ south coast, has become the largest wheat gluten and starch plant of its kind in the world.  

Manildra Group is a diverse agribusiness that showcases and delivers the finest Australian food and industrial products to the world.

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