Under the first tranche of its Food to Market program, the state-government will back 13 peak industry and regional bodies to conduct projects to add value to food grown and processed in Victoria.
The Victorian Government has pledged $8.4 million to help the state’s agricultural producers manage and minimise supply-chain risks; build capability in domestic markets; and expand their export reach.
An additional $2.8 million will be provided by trade-facilitation agency Global Victoria to support export recovery in industries impacted by COVID-19-related disruptions.
“The Food to Market program is an excellent example of how we are providing timely support to agribusinesses impacted by the pandemic, while capitalising on opportunities to expand into new markets over the longer term,” Victorian Minister for Agriculture Mary-Anne Thomas said.
AUSVEG, peak industry body for fresh-vegetable exporters across the state, will get $960,000 to investigate and trial new packaging and transport options. The funding will help keep viable export pathways open for the state’s producers of broccoli, cauliflower, asparagus, celery and lettuce crops.
Citrus Australia and the Australian Table Grape Association received a combined $1.4 million to lead a brace of traceability pilots for premium fruit that will help Victoria’s growers diversify; and protect high-value exports. The pilots will use cutting-edge technology, isotope testing, ‘cool-chain’ tracking and orchard mapping to improve traceability, safeguarding the industry from fraud and enabling proof of provenance for Victoria’s premium produce.
Cherry Growers Australia got $750,000 to develop a ‘Chemical Use for Export’ toolkit, providing evidence-based, practical advice to Victoria-based exporters.
“By supporting our agrifood sector to grow and expand into new markets, we are protecting Victoria’s global reputation as exporters and suppliers of some of the world’s best food and fibre products,” said the Minister for Trade, Martin Pakula.
The Food to Market program is funded under the Victorian Government’s Agriculture Strategy, the goal of which is to support the development of a strong, innovative and sustainable agriculture sector.
Source: Bringing Victoria’s locally grown and processed Food to Market I Food & Beverage Industry News