In a bid to make up for lost export and food-service business, Australia’s MainStream Aquaculture decided to use the COVID-19 shutdown as a chance to expand its direct-to-public sales.
The business quickly established an online store and began weekly farm-gate sales from its Wyndham farm, a half-hour’s drive from the Melbourne CBD.
At high-end Australian eateries, customers typically pay around $180 per kilogram for MainStream’s premium ‘Infinity Blue’ barramundi; online and at the farm gate, prices range from a mere $35/kg, with next-day farm to plate delivery.
While the pandemic had “significantly disrupted” the business’s traditional supply channels, including exports to 25 countries, it had sped up plans to build a new customer base via direct sales, MainStream managing director Boris Musa told Food&Beverage News in early June.
“It was always an aspiration to develop that side of the business …The supply chain dislocation caused by COVID-19 has provided us with an opportunity to create direct consumer channels,” Musa said.
“This has been a dramatic event that required decisive action and new way of operating to keep the lights on and staff employed. We are a far better business now and are poised to emerge stronger after COVID-19.
Source: Barramundi farm taps new markets to combat COVID crisis I Food&Beverage News