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Truss calls on national food industry to boost exports.

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AFFA01/176WT 2 July 2001

Truss calls on national food industry to boost exports

The Federal Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, Warren Truss, today encouraged Australia's processed food industry to raise its export rates to build Australia's world market share.

Mr Truss was speaking at the opening of 2001: A Food Odyssey, a combined food industry convention and conference in Adelaide. The event is a combination of the 34th Australian Institute of Food Science and Technology Annual Convention & Exhibition, and the 15th CSIRO Annual Food Industry Convention.

Mr Truss told industry representatives that it's imperative for Australian producers to investigate new avenues of doing business in order to increase profitability and competitiveness in the emerging world food market.

"The Australian food industry is entering a new phase of its development — one dominated by the rapid globalisation of food production, processing and retailing," Mr Truss said.

"Given the low growth prospects of Australia's mature domestic market, further growth and employment opportunities in the sector are most likely through increased exports.

"This will require Australian food producers to connect more closely with every link in the world's food supply chain.

"As a preliminary step in this direction the National Food Industry Advisory Committee was established as an industry committee earlier this year to develop recommendations for a National Food Industry Strategy."

"The strategy is being developed under the Federal Government's Action Agenda process, and will cover processed food, including meat and dairy produce, beverages and ingredients, and fresh produce.

"It will also cover issues relating to the entire food chain, including the transport, packaging and related sectors.

Mr Truss said the Government would be considering the Committee's report in early September.

"The National Food Industry Strategy will outline the directions and steps government and industry need to jointly take to increase our food production," Mr Truss said.

"It will then be important that our national food industry acts upon the recommendations contained in the finalised strategy.

"I believe that an industry-wide commitment to addressing the issues that are being identified will deliver a more profitable and competitive industry — one capable of gaining a greater share of the world market."

Mr Truss said some of the issues already identified by the committee included:

the need to build a supportive business environment; ● the need to make use of the latest advances in science and technology; ● the development of an export strategy; ● improving our competitive advantages, through targeted education and training; and ●

building supplier power through better supply chain management. ●

Mr Truss said he was confident that through cooperation and collaboration, and with a commitment to managing innovation across all business operations, the food industry would achieve its goals.

"This is an approach that has already achieved significant results for a wide range of Australian food businesses and are highlighted in a new publication — Recipes for Success," Mr Truss said.

Mr Truss said Recipes for Success, which he launched at the conference, contains 20 case studies of domestic and international food businesses that have succeeded by better managing innovation at all levels of their businesses.

Minister's office: Yvonne Best (02) 6277 7520 or 0418 415 772

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Last updated 2 July 2001

URL: Commonwealth of Australia 2001