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29 October 2021

Western Australian Agrifood Export eNews

Agribusiness, commercial fishing and aquaculture news from the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD).  If you have any questions or information to share, please email export@dpird.wa.gov.auSubscribe to Western Australian Agrifood Export eNews.

IFAM flights extended over summer

The International Freight Assistance Mechanism (IFAM) has extended multiple routes to Asia ahead of the summer season.  This includes Perth to Bangkok and two weekly flights from Melbourne (via Perth) to Bangkok and Singapore respectively.

IFAM will continue to closely monitor changes to commercial schedules and any subsequent impact on airfreight capacity, and will adjust support under the mechanism accordingly.

The latest IFAM outbound and inbound flights are available on the IFAM website.  IFAM additionally provides grants in relation to high value and time sensitive perishable products in order to keep global links open.  Exporters are encouraged to engage with their freight forwarders who will submit applications to IFAM prior to shipment. 

For more information, please email Austrade at airfreight@austrade.gov.au or DPIRD's International Airfreight Coordinator Terry Burnage at terry.burnage@dpird.wa.gov.auSource:  IFAM / DPIRD  |  Photo:  Sangga Rima Roman Selia / Unsplash

Forum connects WA food producers and buyers

Western Australian food and beverage producers connected directly with buyers from across the country at the inaugural Meet the Buyer exhibition in Perth this week.

Producers met face-to-face with buyers and industry to grow their business and examine new markets for their products.  Breakout sessions covering packaging trends and the future of QR Codes were also included in the program.

More than 70 businesses from across WA and a total of 500 attendees took part in the event – an initiative of the State’s Buy West Eat Best food and beverage labelling program, supported by the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD).

“A good representation of buyers, distributors, educators, chefs and sommeliers, as well as food service and hospitality businesses attended the exhibition,” DPIRD Industry and Economic Development Deputy Director General Liam O'Connell said.

“Large companies were there, including Woolworths, Coles, Metcash IGA, Farmer Jacks, Crown, MBL Foods and Pan Pacific, as well as niche independent buyers," Mr O'Connell said.

More than 450 brands were on offer, from locally grown beef and lamb, to a selection of premium seafood, seasonal fruit and vegetables, honey, dairy products and olive oils.

For more information about Buy West Eat Best initiatives visit buywesteatbest.org.au, while more information on the Agrifood and Beverage Voucher Program can be found at agric.wa.gov.au/AFBvoucherprogramMore...  Source and Photo:  DPIRD

Time to check the health of your business

FIAL has developed the Business Health Check Tool, an online, self-diagnostic and guidance framework delivered as a self-assessment.

The questionnaire-based tool assesses the level of capability and capacity a business has to meet the expectations of buyers within the international food supply chain.

It provides recommendations for performance improvements and  prompts a review of current readiness potential to enter FIAL's support program into markets and innovation. 

FIAL collaborates with indsutry to grow the share of Australian food in the globl marketplace.  More...  Source:  FIAL  |  Photo:  J. Kelly Brito / Unsplash

Vegetable exporters using tech to increase shelf life

Australia’s vegetable exporters are tapping into new technology to double the shelf life of their produce, helping to increase their competitiveness amid rising freight costs brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

A pilot project by Queensland's Department of Agriculture and Fisheries, AUSVEG and Hort Innovation used controlled atmosphere technology to trial sea freight to New Zealand and Asia.

Trials on broccoli, sweet corn, green beans and iceberg lettuce were conducted using Modified Atmosphere Packaging liners and controlled atmosphere conditions inside containers, with the aim of extending storage life.  Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries principal horticulturist Jodie Campbell said the results from the trials were extremely promising.

“Shipping broccoli to Japan and Taiwan, we found the ideal container temperature was close to 0C while increasing temperatures to 4C reduced shelf life by up to seven days,” Ms Campbell said. 

“With sweet corn, the results revealed that shipping under a controlled atmosphere treatment doubled shelf life on arrival in market for up to 10 days," Ms Campbell said.

The results show packaging and controlled atmosphere treatments can reduce the risks associated with shipping, providing exporters with the knowledge and confidence to pursue sea freight.

In Western Australia, the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development is working with AusIndustry on a Cold Chain Optimisation project, which aims to improve capacity in cold chain practices for perishable goods.  For more information, please email Terry.Burnage@dpird.wa.gov.au or Brett.Henderson@ep.industry.gov.au.  More... Source:  Austrade  |  Photo:  DPIRD

WTO launches new online tool to navigate changes in product naming system

The World Trade Organisation has launched a new online tool for keeping track of changes in the Harmonised Commodity Description and Coding System (HS), used for the classification of traded goods.

The HS Tracker was developed with the support of the World Customs Organisation. It aims to to help customs officials and traders prepare for HS amendments that will enter into force on 1 January 2022.

Since its creation in 1988, the HS has played a key role in world trade and is used in customs tariffs, trade statistics and trade negotiations, among others. The system is intended to assist trade officials, statisticians, lawyers, researchers, and businesses.  More...  Source and Photo:  WTO

Cooperation in trade and investment needed to revitalise world economy - WTO

The COVID-19 pandemic has acted as a massive ‘stress test’ both for world trade and investment, causing unprecedented shocks to global value chains, the World Trade Organisation (WTO) said last Friday.  Speaking at the World Investment Forum of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, WTO Deputy Director-General Xiangchen Zhang underlined the importance of international cooperation on trade and investment to enable economies to recover from the pandemic.

“Trade and investment serve as twin engines to power the world economic recovery from the pandemic,” Mr Zhang said.

"Today's hyper-connected global economy has made the world more susceptible to shocks – but it has also made it more resilient when they strike. 

"While the pandemic brought strains on the global value chains, and there are problems – for example, semiconductor scarcity and port backlogs – there has been no total breakdown," Mr Zhang said.

Dr Zhang added that the dip in world merchandise and services trade during the pandemic has been significantly smaller than the one during the 2008-09 global financial crisis.  Goods have continued to flow across borders and many economies have gradually begun to recover, albeit unevenly.   More... Source: WTO | Related: Why the supply chain crunch will continue into 2022 Source:  Washington Post | Photo: Barrett Ward / Unsplash [On 21 October, with no berths available, 79 container ships with a combined cargo value of almost US$8 billion were anchored off the US ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, an all time record.]