At Margaret River Hemp Co., we're passionate about sustainability, innovation, and supporting local industries.
Today, we're thrilled to share some exciting news from Victoria's food and fibre sector that aligns perfectly with our values.
The Andrews Labor Government is making a significant investment in research, job creation, and industry growth within Victoria's food and fibre sector.
Moreover, an Australian-first consortium is set to fast-track opportunities that will ripple across regional Victoria, bringing hope and prosperity to these communities.
The driving force behind this groundbreaking initiative is the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO).
With a generous $1 million investment from the Labor Government, they're poised to lead the way in fostering innovation, boosting production, and nurturing collaboration across the sector.
This consortium is not a solo endeavour. It's a harmonious collaboration between industry leaders, educational institutions, and government bodies, all united by a shared vision of driving innovation, creating jobs, and amplifying the food and fibre sector's potential.
Among the notable partners are Regional Development Victoria (RDV), Deakin University, La Trobe University, Australian Catholic University (ACU), Monash University, Swinburne University, University of Melbourne, RMIT University, Federation University (FedUni), Victoria University, Victoria's nine Regional Partnerships, six Victorian-based Regional Development Australia Committees, and Food and Fiber Gippsland.
Victoria's food and fibre sector is as diverse as it is abundant. It encompasses a wide array of products, including dairy, fruits, vegetables, wine, honey, smallgoods, flowers, wool, and, of course, hemp.
It also extends to manufacturers and food processors using locally sourced ingredients, as well as the networks and facilities that support them.
In 2021-22, Victoria earned the distinction of being the largest food and fibre exporter by value in Australia, generating over $17 billion in revenue and contributing to 26% of national exports.
This thriving sector thrives on the contributions of large and small enterprises across regional and rural Victoria.
By joining forces with leading research institutions and experts in business, industry, science, and policy, this consortium aims to make the journey from proposal to project initiation more accessible and attainable within the region.
It will provide invaluable support for projects with market and investment strategies, supply chain enhancements, infrastructure planning, technical and export feasibility assessments, and environmental sustainability initiatives.
This ambitious project is part of the Government's impressive commitment to rural and regional Victoria, with an investment exceeding $41 billion since 2015.
In the words of Minister for Regional Development Harriet Shing, "This landmark partnership is about unlocking growth in food and fibre across the state's regions.
It will drive economic recovery and development for regional and rural Victorians by creating jobs, supporting skills, and attracting talent."
For those interested in learning more about this initiative, visit rdv.vic.gov.au.
At Margaret River Hemp Co., we wholeheartedly applaud endeavours like this that promote sustainability, innovation, and the prosperity of local communities.
We can create a brighter, more sustainable future for Victoria and beyond.