WA vegie export market set to grow
A PROJECT designed to increase West Australian vegetable exports to key overseas and emerging markets has kicked off in Perth.
The three-year project, spearheaded by vegetablesWA, will help upskill local vegetable growers to become export ready and tap into the global demand for quality fresh produce.
VegetablesWA chief executive John Shannon said while times had been tough in the industry, there was work being done to help WA growers access overseas markets.
“We see strong potential for WA growers to access these markets,” he said.
“Australia has several competitive advantages in the international marketplace including geographical proximity to key markets, counter seasonality and the perception of Australia as a premium quality producer.”
Mr Shannon said the project aimed to increase exports and grow the value of vegetable exports by 40 per cent by 2020.
WA Corn Growers managing director Jim Trandos said his family’s business, Trandos Farms, employed more than 100 people and produced sweet corn and beans on four properties in Wanneroo, Gingin, Beermullah and Broome.
“We currently export to Dubai, Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia and New Zealand,” he said.
“Our exports sit at about 15 per cent of our total sales annually and we are looking to increase our sales to 20 per cent in the next 12 months.” d482305
Mr Trandos said labour was the most difficult challenge facing the agriculture sector.
“The other issues in horticulture are also water and from an export point of view, we are a very high cost producing country which makes it more difficult to compete on the world market,” he said.
“Our advantage is we are recognised as a clean, green, safe country for export production.”
WA Corn Growers’ Stephanie Matthews, export development manager Lloyd Williams, Alanna Matthews and managing director Jim Trandos.