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New industries vital for Australian agriculture

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Media Release

GPO Box 1563, Canberra ACT 2601 Facsimile (02) 6272 2001

International code 616

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18 March 1999 0 0

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New industries vital for Australian agriculture

‘Traditional agricultural industries are under increasing pressure and new industries are often better positioned to control their terms of trade and attract higher margins’, Mr Peter Cooke, Chairman of New Industries Partnership Group, Agriculture Western Australia, said in Canberra today.

Speaking at the Emerging Agricultural Industries session at OUTLOOK 99 conference, Mr Cooke said, ‘increasingly the Australian agricultural sector will need to invest in developing new industries to ensure they are well positioned to identify and capture new opportunities’.

Mr John Yencken, Principal, Karingal Consultants, told the conference, ‘the Australian wildflower and native plant industry is a success story in its employment generation and past export growth’.

Mr Yencken suggested, ‘improved quality image, better control of supply and increased penetration in the domestic market are important to support export success’. He warned, ‘an industry will not succeed with two quality standards, one for domestic and another for export sales’.

Concerned with availability of research and development funds, Mr Yencken emphasised that, ‘new product development will have in future to be funded almost entirely from industry sources’.

Mr James Kellaway, Meat and Livestock Australia, told the conference that ‘with the misfortunes being experienced by a number of extensive livestock industries and on-farm enterprises, goat meat production provides a viable alternative for current and prospective farmers and meat manufacturers’.

‘The introduction of better meat breeds, growing exports and, to a lesser extent, domestic demand have fuelled interest in the production of goat meat. However, the majority of goats being processed are still feral animals, with a small number of farmed goats now starting to appear’, he added.

Mr Kellaway emphasised that, ‘in Australia, there is now a need to develop an organised line of goat meat supply rather than continually harvesting a feral resource’.

Mr Wayne Beddison from The Lentil Company, Victoria, said his company’s success was built on the development of strategic alliances between suppliers and processors. ‘For the first time a company went out and asked what growers wanted and asked what buyers wanted, and then developed strategies accordingly’, he added.

Speakers at the session, Emerging Agricultural Industries, were Mr Peter Cooke, Director, New Industries Partnership Group, Agriculture Western Australia; K^F"John Yencken, Principal, Karingal' Consultants; ' Mr James Kellaway, Meat and Livestock Australia; and Mr Wayne Beddison, The Lentil Company, Horsham, Victoria.

For further information contact: During the conference, Margaret Day, OUTLOOK Media Centre on (02) 6276 5242 or 018 487 825 After the conference, Mr Vince O ’Donnell, ABARE on (02) 6272 2255

ABARE acknowledges the support of its major O utlook conference partner, Cisco Systems.