News Article


   Thursday 11th July, 2019

Gippsland food and fibre businesses wanting to fast track their export plans have until Monday 22 July to submit their expressions of interest to join a new program that aims to support their business and industry growth.

The Gippsland Connect Program is designed to support small to medium food and fibre enterprises in the region across a number of different levels and stages of their export journey.

This includes businesses that have already started exporting but would like some support to take it to the next level, those who are ready to begin exporting their products, or those are close to being export ready but may need some help to take that final step.

With a clear objective to reflect the diversity of Gippsland, there is a focus on SME’s with niche and premium products (fresh and value-added) from the dairy, seafood, vegetable and meat sectors, as well as craft beer and wine.

There is capacity for 20 businesses to be supported in the first intake, and the emphasis will be on assisting the participating food and fibre businesses to improve their capabilities and increase their exports, whilst amplifying their own business growth and improving growth for their industry as a whole.

Food & Fibre Gippsland's Dr. Nicola Watts is encouraging businesses from all around the region to be part of what she anticipates will be a very engaging and motivating group that is able to connect with multiple layers of support to achieve their export goals.

“It is part of a range of strategies that support innovation and sustainable growth, and with high importance placed on access to collaborative online trading platforms and logistics systems that make exporting easier, the Gippsland Connect Programme will be constantly delivering guidance and specialist advice over a two-year period.

“By containing the group to a maximum of 20, the programme will be highly customised to match the individual needs of participating SME’s, whilst also having common support services and that participating businesses will be able to tap into“Dr Watts said.

On top of online trading platforms and logistics systems, these support services are likely to also include market insights from targeted regions around the world, and access to collaborative marketing and branding, as well as in-country campaigns and activations that help drive awareness of Gippsland produce.

Dr Watts believes that Food & Fibre Gippsland’s three core principles of collaboration, innovation and engagement will be central to the success of this project and the prosperity it has the potential to generate for both individuals and the region.

“We want to work closely with our participant SME’s to give them the confidence to make informed decisions about where the export opportunities are that present the most efficient and profitable options for their business “she concluded.

To discuss the project in further detail, enquire about your participant eligibility or to submit your expression of interest, contact Dr Nicola Watts –