‘We’re still here’: Business celebrates 125 years
BELOVED Northern Rivers company Norco is celebrating 125 years this year after its formation in Byron Bay in 1895.
Dairy farmer Tony Wilson said Norco had become an important organisation for local farmers.
"It was relatively automatic in the beginning but over time we've come to appreciate what it means to be part of it," Mr Wilson said.
"What we do like about it is because we're a co-op we have the buying power, half our money goes into"
"It's a nice thing to know that we've got here (125 years) but all the others have gone by the wayside and we're still here."
Mr Wilson said it was important to realise the impact that supporting Norco has in the region.
"Looking after a lot of people, we've got 340-odd members, 200 farms and more than 800 employees so it's pretty big for the region."
Norco CEO Michael Hampson said the co-op valued the community support in face of a difficult year
"I think a lot of people sort of, you know, think that they are part owners of Norco because they've grown up with it for many, many, many years. Which is great … we certainly love the engagement and, the support," Mr Hampson said.
The journey to the milestone has not been easy especially with the events of the past year.
"The last twelve months has certainly been one of the more challenging … the worst drought that anyone can recall, we had those terrible bushfires of course.
"And then from there, thankfully we got some rain but just went straight into a flood and then March with COVID has come along and changed the way we do things at the moment … we're still going strong."
With 125 years down, Norco has plans to keep going for many years to come.
"We're looking certainly looking forward to the future and we'll be looking to make some investments in our business to see how we can support our farmers to be sustainable into the future."