Small-scale and craft producers across Victoria are now better equipped to grow their businesses and spread local produce more widely, thanks to support from the Andrews Labor Government.
Minister for Agriculture Jaclyn Symes today visited Strathbogie Meatsmiths near Euroa to announce that the Labor Government is backing almost 250 food, drink and produce companies from around the state as part of the first round of the Artisanal Sector Program.
Run by Fiona and Andrew Townsend, Strathbogie Meatsmiths produces rare-breed British white beef sold at farmers markets. A grant of $5000 from the Labor Government will allow the Townsends to purchase a new cool room, so they can store more produce and meet growing demand for their beef.
Across Victoria, almost 250 small-scale and craft food and drink businesses have received grants to support them to grow by purchasing new equipment or infrastructure, completing training in specialist food and agricultural techniques or hiring consultancy services to build their marketing and business capability.
The Victorian Budget 2018/19 provided $2 million to support small and micro businesses from around the state increase production and promote their local produce more widely.
Victoria is renowned for its high-quality premium produce, and the Labor Government is proud to support the agricultural businesses that not only feed and clothe Victorians, but create jobs, attract tourism and make regional communities vibrant.
The Labor Government is now continuing its support for small-scale craft food, beer and spirit producers, with a commitment to provide an additional $10 million.
The expansion of the program is part of a goal to keep Victoria as the nation’s number one food producer, support local economies, create local jobs and reach $20 billion in food and fibre exports by 2030.
The program has received a huge response and large number of applications in its first round, highlighting the important role of local produce, and the diversity of the sector across Victoria.
For more information please visit agriculture.vic.gov.au/artisanag