13/12/2017 - 09:49

Local producers secure supplier deals at stadium

13/12/2017 - 09:49

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About 30 small Western Australian food and beverage businesses have made the big leagues, winning contracts that contribute to $150 million committed to suppliers across five years at Optus Stadium.

Damon Venoutsos (left), stadium chief executive Mike McKenna, executive chef Jochen Beranek, Paul Papalia, and Ron Taggart with local produce supplied to the stadium. Photo: Attila Csaszar

About 30 small Western Australian food and beverage businesses have made the big leagues, winning contracts that contribute to $150 million committed to suppliers across five years at Optus Stadium.

Two key suppliers to win three-year contracts were Malaga-based New West Foods, and Food Packaging Australia (FPA).

New West Foods will supply more than 200 tonnes of frozen potato chips, 800,000 portions of MasterFoods condiments and 10 tonnes of seafood to the stadium annually, including Exmouth prawns, Derby barramundi and Geraldton crabs.

The contract will increase New West Foods’ business activity by about 15 per cent, according to owner and managing director Damon Venoutsos, who told Business News the contract was by some stretch the company’s largest.

New West Foods, founded in 1988 by Mr Venoutsos’s parents, Con and Despa, currently employs 20 people and distributes products to hospitality venues across Perth, as well as events such as the Perth Royal Show.

Mr Venoutsos acknowledged he was surprised to have won the contract when considering large corporate competition.

“Honestly, from the outset we thought if we got something it’d be excellent, but we didn’t think we’d get the volume of what we’d got,” he said.

“We’re looking at upgrading our vehicles and getting some extra staff, but really it (the contract) underpins future growth and the ability to be able to grow in our market.”

FPA founder Ron Taggart said his business, now run by his son Malcolm, had grown from three to 80 people since inception in 1989, with 50 based in WA.

The contract to supply Optus Stadium was FPA’s highest-profile win to date, Mr Taggart told Business News.

FPA will supply the stadium food packaging, including more than 500,000 hot chip containers, 200,000 burger boxes and 1.5 million beer cups annually, all of which will be made from recyclable material.

“It’s not just product value, it’s more staff, more vehicles, more tax to the country,” Mr Taggart said.

“As we grow with big companies like this, other companies want to get involved; and as other companies get involved, the company grows more, which means more employment.”

Small Business Minister Paul Papalia said it was pleasing that so much of the produce to be served at the stadium would be caught or grown in WA’s regions.

“I’ve got to commend them (Optus Stadium), they know that’s of interest to the government; it’s not like we’ve had to drag them kicking and screaming,” he said.

“They saw the benefit of it themselves and are contributing as a good corporate citizen as well and I think they would have known there’d be a lot of scrutiny around those sorts of decisions post the move from Domain (stadium).”

Mr Papalia said small businesses accounted for 41 per cent of the state’s total private sector employment, and the latest rounds of contracts would have a flow-on effect to dozens of small businesses involved in hospitality and primary production.

Other small produce suppliers to secure deals at the stadium include Little Home Bakery (bread), Morley Growers (fruit and vegetables), Total Food Distributers (meat), Mahogany Creek Distributors (poultry and game), Mondo Meats (meat), and Oil 2 U (oil).

Larger food and beverage suppliers will include Mrs Mac’s Pies, Gage Roads Brewing Company, and the recently announced Australian wine specialist Treasury Wine Estates.

About 35 different WA wines will be supplied to the stadium, including Devil’s Lair, Hartog’s Plate and Fifth Leg wines.

Mrs Mac's has recently announced a partnership with WA-based Dardanup Butchering Company to craft a new steak pie, exclusive to the Optus Stadium.

According to Mrs Mac's more than 85 per cent of ingredients used to make the pie will be WA-sourced.

 

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