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Nowra defence company recognised with national award

Nowra defence company recognised with national award
L-R: GDS Managing Director Laurie Koster and GDS Director of Operations Jeromy Bendall

The parliamentary secretary Gareth Ward has announced a Nowra company has received an award for its manufacturing contribution to the Australian Defence Force.

Global Defence Solutions took out an award for projects worth under $50 million at the Defence + Industry Conference in Canberra for its deployable catering capability for the Royal Australian Air Force.

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"They say an army marches on its stomach, but in this case it is our Air Force – and hopefully soon also our Army and Navy – thanks to this enterprising company," Ward said.

"After two years work, GDS recently delivery three large and two small kitchens for the RAAF to feed personnel when in-the-field on operations including disaster relief.

"Made from stainless steel and aluminium, the large kitchens feed about 1,000 and the small kitchens up to 250 people per sitting. They are transported in expandable containers by road, rail or air and setup in hours.

"The mobile kitchens have built-in power generators and fire suppression systems and are equipped with ovens, fryers, bratt pans, refrigerators, grills, kettles and bain maries."

GDS managing director Laurie Koster, a former Army engineer who started his company in 1998, now employs 20 mainly ex-defence staff with backgrounds ranging from electrical and mechanical engineers to fitters and turners.

The former Army engineer said local manufacturing is a key component to the company's ethos.

"I love living in Nowra and things are going brilliantly. We manufacture as much as we can here and source elsewhere only if we can’t do it locally," Koster said.

The NSW government will be promoting GDS and other NSW defence industry companies at the Pacific 2017 International Maritime Exposition in October 2017.

Nowra defence company recognised with national award
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