07/07/2017 - 00:28

Local opportunity in premium products

07/07/2017 - 00:28

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Olive oil, chocolate, avocados, marron and cider are among a number of Western Australian products that are ideal for local industry to target as premium markets, according to a report commissioned by the Department of Agriculture and food released Thursday night.

Ms MacTiernan was appointed as minister after the March state election.

Olive oil, chocolate, avocados, marron and cider are among a number of Western Australian products that are ideal for local industry to target as premium markets, according to a report commissioned by the Department of Agriculture and food released Thursday night.

The paper, written by research consultancy Coriolis, was set up by the previous state government to find potential opportunities for the state's agribusiness industry to value add and move away from production solely of raw commodities.

The paper recommends private industry lead a move towards food processing and targeting premium product markets, with a focus on using local ingredients in products rather than shipping them overseas.

Beer, cider, wine and spirits were among the farm products most suited for premium market sales, the report found.

That was because such alcoholic beverages were growing in nearby markets, and could be produced by smaller businesses without large scale, in a market with many brands and price points.

A further benefit was the presence of existing premium alcohol brands on the market, which Coriolis said would enable ‘fast follow‘ emulation.

Honey and muesli also scored highly, with WA having comparative advantages in the production of both, and the products coming up with ticks in most of the 15 categories used to analyse potential for the products.

Olive oil and chocolate performed well on the checklist, too, although WA does not have a clear comparative advantage in either, the report found.

Other unexpected suggestions included coffee and pureed baby food, although the report admitted WA did not presently have a comparative advantage in either product.

Agriculture Minister Alannah MacTiernan said WA had traditionally produced and exported bulk quantities of agrifood ingredients, and had a great reputation for such.

“But we are falling behind in the share of premium, value-added consumer-ready products we export compared to other States and wealthy developed countries,” she said.

“This report highlights export market value up to $4 billion across the 20 priority opportunities and analyses the capacity for WA businesses to capture a larger share of the value of this market.

“This is about developing the full potential of food and beverage businesses here in Western Australia, which are adding value to our raw produce, growing jobs and building our economy.”

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