Growers encouraged to embrace export opportunities

North Queensland growers attending today’s 2018 Burdekin Export Forum have been encouraged to explore opportunities to export their locally grown produce into international markets.

The Forum, held at Burdekin Theatre in Ayr, brought farmers and horticultural producers from across the North together to learn more about doing business internationally.

Burdekin Shire Council Mayor Lyn McLaughlin said the Burdekin and North Queensland region was well positioned to help meet the global demand for imported food.

“Our farmers here in the North produce some of the best crops and some of the tastiest produce in the world,” Cr McLaughlin said.

“Knowing this, Council is very keen to work with our local growers to explore exporting opportunities to support diversification of the local agriculture and horticulture industries.”

Growers heard from knowledgeable speakers from across government, transport, business and agriculture.

Regional Director of Enterprise Singapore, Timothy Chua, highlighted Singapore’s strategic position as a gateway to Asia.

“The audience heard ASEAN is expected to see food demand grow by as much as 40 per cent by 2050 and how Australian products could find their way through Asia from Singapore, which is extremely well connected by both air and sea,” Cr McLaughlin said.

“Export Council of Australia Chair Dianne Tipping told the audience Australia, with a population of 24 million, produces enough food to feed 60 million people. The Export Council has been working to build the capacity of small and medium sized farming enterprises to export internationally and can assist our local farm businesses with information, mentoring, promotions and more.”

Cr McLaughlin said growers had walked away with the latest information on emerging markets, international opportunities and supply chains.

“The forum provided growers with information needed to commence the journey to being export ready,” she said.

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