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14 June 2022

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.

$365,000 in small business grants to access Asian markets

The Western Australian Government has awarded $365,000 in funding to help local businesses grow their export capability across rapidly expanding Asian markets.

Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) will share the latest round of funding from the State Government's Access Asia Business Grants program, managed by Invest and Trade Western Australia. The program is a key initiative under WA's Asian Engagement Strategy 2019-30, helping SMEs to enter new Asian markets.

Grant recipients will use the funding to improve their competitive edge in these markets, helping strengthen and diversify the State's economy by creating local jobs. Key markets include China, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Vietnam, Singapore and South Korea.

The 16 SMEs are spread across the priority sectors identified in the WA Government's economic development framework, Diversify WA. These include health and medical life sciences; primary industries; space industries; and tourism, events and creative industries. 

The grants were also open to industry associations and Asian business councils to support their efforts in Asia. To date, 68 companies have been assisted through four rounds of the program, which was launched in 2019. More... Source: WA Minister for State Development, Jobs and Trade | Photo: House of Honey

Last chance to register – trade event participation

The Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development is considering organising and/or participating in several trade market activations, including international trade exhibitions, outbound trade delegations or inbound buyer missions.

To register your interest in participating in these events, please submit your expression of interest by tomorrow, Wednesday 15 June 2022. Source: DPIRD | Photo: Food and Hotel Asia

Unique WA-developed abalone ocean fishery certified sustainable

Western Australia's credentials for sustainable fisheries have been further enhanced with the Flinders Bay 'hatch and catch' fishery for greenlip abalone earning the Marine Stewardship Council's tick of approval for certified, sustainable seafood. 

On World Oceans Day last Wednesday, the WA Minister for Fisheries joined representatives from the Western Australia Fishing Industries Council and the Marine Stewardship Council to award Rare Foods Australia (RFA) internationally recognised status as a Wild Sustainable Fishery. This achievement by RFA, which operates the world's first abalone ranch near Augusta, becomes another of WA's sustainable fisheries success stories.

In 2009, the operators began trialling ocean ranching for abalone, which led to the creation of deployable 'ABITAT' reefs that are then allowed to colonise with algae, so they can be stocked with hatchery-raised juvenile abalone for growing in the ocean with little interference and no supplemental feeding.

Abalone take two to three years to grow from seed to a marketable size in sustainable conditions overseen with environmentally friendly practices.  Harvests by RFA have been very successful, with a 2020-21 total of 75.9 tonnes of greenlip abalone sent to seafood markets in Australia, as well as Europe and Asia, earning valuable export dollars. More... Source: WA Minister for Fisheries | Photo: RFA

AEGIC funding to grow market share for local grains

The Australian grains industry is set to benefit from a $24 million investment in the Australian Export Grains Innovation Centre (AEGIC) to continue its marketing development and research efforts to build long-term industry success. The Western Australian Government and the Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC) have signed an agreement to each contribute $3 million per year from 2022-23 to 2025-26, enabling AEGIC to maintain and build new trade opportunities and industry value.

The WA Government has also allocated an additional $1 million in 2022-23 to pursue research that benefits local growers. The State's extra funding will extend current research to position soft wheat to seize market opportunities, increase consumption of whole grain wheat and cultivate opportunities for locally grown oats.

AEGIC's work benefits stakeholders across the grains supply chain, through market analysis and intelligence, understanding customer requirements, and developing new products and value-adding opportunities. AEGIC has a strong reputation in the competitive global grains marketplace, particularly in key South East Asian markets, where it works with processors, millers, brewers and maltsters to satisfy discerning grains specifications and cultivate customer relationships. More...  Source: WA Minister for Agriculture and Food | Photo: DPIRD

New opportunities for high-quality beef exports

The production of high-quality pasture-fed beef can be a challenging but rewarding endeavour, which can open up new export opportunities, according to Western Australian beef producer Wandering Clover Fed™ Beef. Production of this beef requires the correct rearing of cattle, high-level soil management for quality feed and proper handling methods. 

An issue with producing pasture-fed beef is that reduced rainfall can restrict a company's ability to produce beef year-round. Clover Fed™ Beef specialises in sustainable high-quality beef, and is developing a pivot irrigation project that will hopefully deal with this issue. The project centres around the foliar fertigation of the pasture through a pivot.

The production of high-quality beef using this system has attracted local and overseas interest for Clover Fed™ Beef, with the company being featured last year on BBC News in the United Kingdom (UK), as well as ABC WA Country Hour (at 11 minutes 25 seconds) in Australia.

Nicola Kelliher – owner of the company with husband Shane – is keen to export their trademarked beef to the UK. She believes it could be a win-win for everyone.

"We feel that we have a similar perspective to premium beef producers in the UK, and we have the opportunity to support each other across the other side of the globe," she says.

Ms Kelliher believes it's not about undercutting and flooding the UK market with Australian beef, but rather underpinning UK premium products with our premium products and allowing people to choose.

"By allowing choice for the consumer, we can encourage awareness about what food they eat, and where it is from, and how it is grown."  Sources: Wandering Clover Fed™ Beef / BBC / ABC | Photo: Nicola Kelliher, Wandering Clover Fed™ Beef