By Luis Feliu
Byron Bay-based Stone and Wood Brewery is undergoing a beer-led boom and set to expand its Murwillumbah operation with a $1.9 million upgrade.
The handcrafted-beer company, which has grown steadily since it was established in Byron Bay almost 10 years ago, wants to install more large fermentation tanks and increase capacity of its wastewater treatment system.
But it had to seek permission to install two external, 16-metre high fermentation tanks which exceeded by six metres the 10-metre height-control limit at South Murwillumbah.
Tweed Shire Council planners say the brewery, in the industrial section of Kite Crescent, was ‘experiencing significant product demand growth’ and the proposed additions were ‘essential to enable the brewery to expand its current operations (over the next five (5) years) and compete in the Australian market’.
The Murwillumbah brewery was opened in 2014 to meet the growing demand for the company’s beer and is where most of its beer is produced, with the Byron Bay operation including its pilot brewery and tasting room.
Planners have given condition approval to the upgrade, which will be debated by councillors at next Thursday’s planning committee meeting.
The development involves installing four new, fully enclosed, 400HL (hektolitre or 100 litres) fermentation tanks to the west of the existing cellar; two new 400HL bright beer tanks and two new 800HL fermentation tanks on a new concrete slab to the north of the cellar, as well as upgrading the existing wastewater treatment system.
Planners have recommended the height variation for the tanks be allowed and the upgrade of the factory approved conditionally.
One of the conditions involves providing 37 off-street car parking spaces.