Police are still investigating how a fire that burnt out a macadamia oil factory in Alstonville yesterday started.
The blaze, which ignited late yesterday morning sent palls of black smoke over a wide area, and destroyed most of the 100,000 litres of oil as well nuts stored at the rear of the factory.
But miraculously the presses in the front of the building were unscathed.
And fortunately no one was in the building at the time of the fire.
More than a dozen fire crews were called out to fight the blaze.
The GM of Macadamia Oils Australia, Darren Burton, said he was notified by a neighbour, who had already called the police.
‘By the time we came up here the whole place was alight – it’s pretty devastating,’ he told ABC radio.
But he added, ‘it’s not the end of the business – we’re well insured’.
Mr Burton said the company’s main office and warehouse in Ballina contained plenty of stock for the immediate future but the factory was destroyed and the longer-term challenge for the company would be to find a new processing facility.
‘We’ll have to decide what the future is for this site,’ he said.