AUSTRALIA’S food and grocery industry turns over more each year than our automotive or housing sectors, and combined with pre-farm gate agriculture would outstrip mining too, according to a new report launched in Canberra tonight.

The Australian Food and Grocery Council’s ‘State of the Industry 2009’ report, launched by Minister for Agriculture, Tony Burke, revealed the food sector’s turnover was worth $100 billion and responsible for more than 38,000 businesses in Australia.

It said in the five years to June 2007, the sector’s turnover had increased by 5.9 per cent, with the fresh produce sector incredibly recording growth of 32pc.

It says dairy and meat manufacturing are the food and beverage sector’s two largest industries.

The combined value-add for food, grocery and fresh produce is around $27 billion, and the combined sectors account for 9.1pc of Australia’s total international trade, or valued at $49 billion in the past 12 months.

The report was prepared by KPMG and is the first time the industry has released such a comprehensive snapshot.

Apart from trade figures, however, most of the data refers to the years 2006-2007.

The food and grocery sector are meeting in Canberra for two days of information sessions on the future of food and grocery production and manufacturing in Australia.


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