Western Australia’s role in addressing food security needs was high on the agenda at CCIWA’s recent Innovation in WA’s Agfood Sector workshop roundtable.
The workshop followed the official opening of the Food Innovation Precinct WA (FIPWA) in the Peel region, which was a landmark moment for driving innovation, research and development, and attracting investment for the State’s agriculture, food and beverage sectors.
More than 45 people business, research and government attended the roundtable and CCIWA’s head of the International Trade and Investment Centre Michael Carter said: “Australia is recognised for its abundant production of agricultural crops, both for domestic consumption and for export.
“Western Australia is a key contributor to this productivity. However, it is important to consider whether the large production volumes of raw products in the state are enough to meet our food security needs.
“To create more value, it is necessary to manufacture food and beverages from these raw product s for domestic and export use. The challenge is to move beyond simply extracting raw materials and to develop farm-to-plate product development and value-adding at scale. This requires leveraging our comparative advantages through innovative approaches.”
Speakers at the roundtable included Peel Development Commission chairperson David Doepel; Triangle Equity Partners partner Greg Riebe; Wide Open Agriculture managing director Ben Cole; FIPWA Food Technology Facility’s project management group chairperson and AgriStart managing director Dr Natasha Teakle; City of Canning business, strategy and advocacy manager Boris Wong; FIPWA general manager Dr Christopher Vas; Spacecubed founder and managing director Brodie McCulloch; and CCIWA’s Michael Carter.
“A primary takeaway from the roundtable was the importance of investing in the industry for growth, to increase job opportunities and solidify WA’s position as a strong producer of quality agriculture, food and beverage products,” Carter said.
Key themes that arose from discussions included value-adding, functional foods, nutrition, agtech adoption, trade and export markets, packaging and sustainability.
The FIPWA is state-of-the-art facility built to foster industry innovation to drive business growth, develop new products and exports, and advance WA’s food and beverage manufacturing industry.
“The Food Innovation Precinct will increase confidence and attract investment for WA to grow, harvest and manufacture food and beverages more efficiently and productively,” Carter said.
CCIWA’s International Trade and Investment Centre (ITIC) helps businesses reduce the time, cost and risk of going global. Contact the team for a free consultation on (08) 9365 7620 or via [email protected].