The region’s farming industry has hit the spotlight last week, with more than $50 million pledged by the Victorian Government for initiatives in the Goulburn and Murray valleys.TONI BRIENT March 12, 2014 4:10am
The region’s farming industry has hit the spotlight last week, with more than $50 million pledged by the Victorian Government for initiatives in the Goulburn and Murray valleys.
The Goulburn Valley Fruit Industry Growing Ordinal, released by Agriculture Minister Peter Walsh on March 4, contained the government’s 15-year plan for the Goulburn Valley fruit industry.
The package includes a horticulture Centre of Excellence in Tatura, a $16 million concessional loans package and a business planning program.
The 41-page roadmap document outlines ‘‘the current situation of the fruit growing industry in the Goulburn Valley, including opportunities and threats (and) develop strategic actions for government, industry and individual businesses’’.
The initiative was released alongside the Goulburn Valley Industry and Employment Plan.
Announcing the plan, Deputy Premier Peter Ryan said it would set out strategic approaches to leverage new industry, trade, investment and employment opportunities.
‘‘Food production and food processing have a strong future in the Goulburn Valley and this plan will implement a long-term strategic approach to manage structural change in the region,’’ Mr Ryan said.
‘‘The region produces 90 per cent of Australia’s processed fruit and has trade links with domestic and international markets, including expanding premium food markets in Asia.’’
Mr Ryan also announced the $5 million Goulburn Valley Industry and Infrastructure Fund open for applications.
On Wednesday, the spotlight shifted from regional production and processing to offshore distribution as Premier Denis Napthine released the Food to Asia Action Plan.
Dr Napthine said Victoria’s food sector would thrive in Asia as the continent’s demand for food increased massively by 2050, and stressed the importance of capitalising on Victorian food and fibre exports.
He said the plan would drive the trade ties with Asian markets and ensure the sector’s long-term growth.
‘‘By 2030, the number of consumers in Asia with discretionary spending will increase sixfold to about 3.5 billion people as demand for food increases exponentially,’’ Dr Napthine said.
‘‘We need to capitalise on Victoria’s strong track-record in international agricultural production with food and fibre exports increasing to more than $9.4 billion in 2012 to 2013, up five per cent on the previous year.’’
Last week’s announcements followed the government’s $22 million co-investment with Shepparton’s SPC Ardmona last month.
The sky is the limit for Wanganui Year 12 VCAL student Leigh Polan, 18, who decided to create two posters examining birdlife around the school.
The under 16 Pigeons kick started the YFNC's finals campaign with a resounding victory over the Paul Spargo led Scots College in the Grand Final of the AWJFL Elwyn Langford Shield at the Albury Sports Ground on Sunday.
Greater Shepparton City Council was successful in securing the National Cutting Horse Association Victorian Futurity Cutting Horse Championships for 2014 and 2015, with this year’s event scheduled from September 10-14 at Tatura Park.
An ad for the Healthy Ageing Project will be filmed in Echuca, Rushworth and Rochester today.
More than $15,000 was raised at a family day on Sunday. The event was to raise money for the families of Barry Purtell and Dave Lobb.
Book Week gets colourful turnout.
Deaprtment of Environment and Primary Industries unhappy about Mt Disappointment vandals.
Jerilderie Shire deputy mayor Ruth McRae handed the key over for the new Rural Fire Service station last Friday.
Farmers have a new weapon in the fight against mice.
Cobram kids learn about health with hospital as state-wide obesity campaign is launched.
Murray Irrigation to search for new boss after Anthony Couroupis finishes with the company.
A few anxious customers were outside the closed gates of the failed Bee-Jay Machinery business on Goulburn Valley Hwy in Shepparton on Tuesday morning, wondering what would become of deposits they had paid for tractors and other machinery.
The Benalla Indian Myna Action Group will pay a $1 per bird bounty on live birds delivered to CAL farm. National Party MP Bill Sykes donated $100 to fund the bounty.
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