Report Synopsis

The Australian Vegetable Industry - Export Opportunities

James Terry

The Australian vegetable industry is complex and diverse. It is spread over a wide range of geographic locations across the country. Travelling throughout Asia, Europe and the Americas as well as numerous production regions within Australia, has assisted with identifying areas where improvements could be made to the Australian vegetable industry.

Market diversification, especially exporting into Asian markets is extremely important for the Australian vegetable industry’s future. To achieve this, Australian producers need to align themselves on a world scale from a packaging, consistency and post-harvest perspective to be competitive in international markets. Australia’s main competitors in Asian markets are USA (California), Mexico and New Zealand and many producers visited in those countries already exhibit those important characteristics. In addition, growers need to work closely with supply chain and marketing experts, using transparent models, to identify and supply markets on a regular basis. Chilean growers are supply chain experts, managing to successfully seafreight highly perishable horticultural produce to the Far East in Asia with consistency each season.

Consumer trends around the world are rapidly changing. Producers need to accept change and adapt their practices to ensure their business remains competitive in an ever-changing global market place. Modern consumers want to buy branded product with options and variations such as diced cauliflower and broccoli, as demonstrated in high end Asian and American supermarkets.

Producers need to support the greater industry in Australia and work with other producers to market together, rather than working individually and competing against their neighbours. Australian growers need to identify opportunities for supply chain efficiency and for value adding of products. Identifying that specialists, external to businesses and appropriate structures within businesses, can assist with ensuring financial stability over time. The modern approach is to allow specialists to undertake tasks and outsource.

This report will summarise the macro and micro challenges facing the vegetable industry now and in the future, discuss major markets and will breakdown and thoroughly address postharvest issues as well as export opportunities and strategies.

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