Gladstone’s Austicks shuts for good, 51 workers left jobless

STICKS STOPPED: Austicks ice cream stick factory in Gladstone has ceased production.
STICKS STOPPED: Austicks ice cream stick factory in Gladstone has ceased production. Brenda Strong GLALIFE

GLADSTONE manufacturing success story Austicks has ceased production, leaving more than 50 staff out of work.

Instead, the multi-million dollar company will source ice cream sticks from France.

Austicks accountant Madeleine Spry said the Bassett St factory shut down its operations late last month, blaming labour costs, and the high Australian dollar.

It previously pumped out 1.5 billion sticks a year.

"It's very, very sad - the cost of manufacturing in Australia, just goes up and up and up," Ms Spry said.

Ms Spry said the owners of the family company were "totally devastated".

The company will keep just two staff in Gladstone, while the factory site will be leased.

Manufacturing equipment has already been sold to an offshore buyer.

Ms Spry said the company had struggled to attract tradesmen, due to wage competition from big industry in town.

She also blamed the spiralling cost of WorkCover and the Australian dollar.

"It's crashing now, but about 18 months (ago) we lost an overseas customer just because of the cost of the dollar," she said.

About 30 staff are still working to package existing stock, but Ms Spry said all work would end in October.

The factory previously had an operating staff of 53, and Ms Spry said some workers had been there for more than 20 years.

Redundancy payouts have been made.

Austicks was Australia's only ice cream stick factory.

Gladstone Regional Council mayor Gail Sellers said the decision was "sad news".


  • Operating for 21 years
  • At its peak, produced 1.5 billion ice cream sticks a year
  • Employed 53 staff in Gladstone - all but two made redundant

Topics:  australian dollar business gladstone manufacturing redundancy

NEW: 10 best places to rent in Gladstone between $100-$200

House 8 Gladstone

Here's a list of some of Gladstone's best places to rent under $200

Gladstone's best teacher revealed

CLASS FAVOURITE: Shelley Slade, head of special education services at Gladstone State High School, was named by Observer readers as Gladstone's favourite teacher. Pictured with students Kody Walsh, 13, and Phoebie Walker-Woodrow, 15.

The Observer put the call out for Gladstone's best teacher

60-yo man taken to hospital after nasty snake bite surprise

A Boyne Island man in his 60s was taken to hospital early this morning after suffering a snake bite at his Katandra St home.

Paramedics responded to the call at about 4am.

Local Partners

Mel C won't return to Spice Girls for daughter

MEL C is adamant she won't reunite with the Spice Girls

60's British rock legends to return to Australia

The Troggs will play a string of dates across Australia in November.  Photo Contributed

We all remember 'Wild Thing' and now you can hear it live.

Depp jumps ship from agency of 25 years

Johnny Depp has signed to CAA after 25 years with the United

Orlando Bloom 'buried' Katy Perry in birthday flowers

Orlando Bloom "buried" Katy Perry in flowers for her birthday

MacBook fires up: New "touchbar" will include emojis

COULD emojis help the MacBook again deliver a laptop revolution?

Angus T. Jones got miserable on Two and a Half Men

Child star's misery while shooting 'Two and a Half Men'

Investors eye new local estate with dirt cheap property

A new estate, Aquatic Vista, has opened at Agnes Water.

BUYERS to go crazy for an entire new estate put on the market.

Want to own one of Australia's best restaurants?

TOP GONG: Mooloolaba Spice Bar has been named in TripAdvisor's Top 10 Australian restaurants for 2016.

Here's your chance to pick up one of the Coast's favourite eateries

OPINION: Banks fear Gladstone future: Councillor

REGIONAL Queensland deserves a helping hand on housing.

Bank reclaims Goondoon St complex plan, places on the market

Multi-million dollar development plan up for sale.

MULTI-MILLION dollar plan for Goondoon St complex on the market.

Tough times in CBD: Woolies says goodbye Ipswich

Woolworths in the Ipswich Mall.Photo: Rob Williams / The Queensland Times

The last day of trading will be January 1

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!