March 2017

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Queensland-Japan bond strengthened with new agreement

A Memorandum of Cooperation (MOC) with the Japanese Ministry of Agriculture Forestry and Fisheries has been signed, providing new opportunities for growth in Queensland’s exports of agriculture and aquaculture industries.

Queensland-Japan AgreementA Memorandum of Cooperation (MOC) with the Japanese Ministry of Agriculture Forestry and Fisheries has been signed, providing new opportunities for growth in Queensland’s exports of agriculture and aquaculture industries.

The memorandum will further strengthen economic, trade and business relations especially for regional exporters.

The memorandum seeks to boost both Queensland and Japan’s exports of agricultural, food and fishery products into south-east Asian markets, allowing Queensland and Japan to share knowledge and skills in a range of fields including crop cultivation, innovative technologies and supply chain transport and logistics.

Another key aspect of the memorandum is to encourage Japanese investment in collaborative agriculture and aquaculture projects in North Queensland.

As a region, North Queensland offers great diversity in the range of commodities being cultivated, counter seasonal production and proximity to south-east Asian markets.

There are potential investment opportunities in aquaculture and the cultivation of culinary soy beans.

Last financial year, Queensland’s agricultural exports to Japan were valued at $1.5 billion. Japan is Queensland’s largest agricultural export partner and Queensland’s primary producers provide 38 per cent of Australia’s agriculture exports to Japan.

Trade and Investment Queensland’s Commissioner in Japan, Tak Adachi, has been working closely with the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries to facilitate the Memorandum of Cooperation and to expand Queensland’s relationship with the Japanese government.

TIQ also continues to work directly with Queensland companies to promote their products to Japanese consumers.

Read more on Queensland’s food and agribusiness sector or contact Trade & Investment Queensland to find out how to expand your business opportunities.

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Asian market froths over Bundaberg brewer's beer

Bundaberg’s Bargara Brewing Company is continuing to take its beer to the world with recent sales to South Korea going well and promising prospects in China.

Bargara Brewing CompanyBundaberg’s Bargara Brewing Company is continuing to take its beer to the world with recent sales to South Korea going well and promising prospects in China.

Bargara’s Asian export agent, Australian Sustainable Food Company, will be presenting the brewers beers to retailers at a Trade and Investment Queensland-Austrade event in Vietnam in April.

Less than three years old, Bargara is already finding success in major markets in Asia with the assistance of the Government’s global business agency Trade and Investment Queensland.

Bargara co-founder and CEO Jack Milbank said the company’s export program started last year when a group of Korean businessmen, who were visiting Bundaberg on other business, tried some of the company’s local brews and decided they had to get them to Korea.

“With TIQ’s help we were able to follow up the lead and by September last year we were selling our Thirsty Turtle Bright Lager, Rusty Roo Red Ale and Drunk Fish Pale Ale in 140 hypermarkets around the country,” Mr Milbank said.

“Demand in Korea has been strong and we’ve just had to send another container load of the Drunk Fish Pale Ale to keep up with the demand.”

The company is finalising its distribution into the craft beer market in Vietnam’s Ho Chi Minh City with a Mexican-style beer flavoured with Australian lemon myrtle rather than the more traditional lime.

“We’ve called it ‘Sombrero’ and they love it in Vietnam but we were thinking we might have to come up with a more Australian name, like ‘Akubra’, just to make sure there’s no confusion about where the beer comes from,” Mr Milbank said.

TIQ will also be assisting with Bargara Brewing Company’s selection of the best Chinese distributor following an initial exploration of the market by way of a recent craft beer mission organised by Austrade.

“We’re also keen to get into the high-end gift market in cities like Shanghai, Hong Kong and Singapore selling products such as beer aged in 100-year-old rum barrels,” Mr Milbank said.

Read more on Queensland’s food and agribusiness sector or contact Trade & Investment Queensland to find out how to expand your business opportunities.

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Bundaberg macadamia processor adds $2m factory upgrade

A new $2 million macadamia drying facility has opened in Bundaberg as the industry continues to strive to meet export demand for the native Queensland crop.

Bundaberg MacadamiasA new $2 million macadamia drying facility has opened in Bundaberg as the industry continues to strive to meet export demand for the native Queensland crop.

Pacific Gold Macadamias, the biggest macadamia processor in Queensland, has recently commissioned a state-of-the-art drying facility and created four new supervisory positions at their Bundaberg factory in the last 12 months.

Last year Bundaberg produced the largest share of the nation’s macadamia crop and is now known as the biggest macadamia growing region in the country.

Around 75 per cent of the macadamias processed by Pacific Gold are exported to China, South East Asia, Japan, Europe and the United States and with the Free Trade Agreements in place, there is more demand than ever from these markets.

The latest statistics show Queensland exports hit a record $52.7 billion in 2016 which is approximately $1 billion a week in export earnings generated by companies like Pacific Gold and others operating in Queensland’s diverse economy.

This season is expected to bring record returns to the industry as Queensland’s production of macadamias is expected to be worth $140 million in 2016-17 which is 17 per cent higher than the final estimate for 2015-16 and almost double the average for the past five years.

Pacific Gold Macadamias General Manager, Shane Johnson, said the industry was growing very quickly in the Bundaberg region.

“Global demand for macadamias is high and we don’t have enough product to meet that demand,” Mr Johnson said.

“China is by far our biggest market with around 50 per cent of our nuts going to that market.

“Last year we processed in excess of 10,000 tonnes of macadamias, worth around $57 million at farm gate.

“We are planning on expanding our facility with additional nut-in-shell storage so things are looking exceptionally positive for macadamias going forward,” he said.

Read more on Queensland’s food and agribusiness sector or contact Trade & Investment Queensland to find out how to expand your business opportunities.

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Queensland exporter sends first Australian lychees to US

Lychee growers

Queensland lychee growers Marcello and Katrina Avolio

A Queensland export and marketing company is celebrating after successfully sending the first commercial shipment of Australian lychees to the United States.

The shipment of 242 cartons, sent by Favco, arrived in the US on 20 December 2016, three years after approval was granted to export Australian lychees to the country.

Favco Business Manager John Nardi worked together with Mareeba lychee grower Marcello Avolio to organise the shipment.

Mr Nardi said the standards required to get the fruit in the US were incredibly high as many protocols, procedures and import hurdles had to be overcome.

“We are working with quality growers and we are very confident they can deliver the quality to meet the requirements of the protocol,” Mr Nardi said.

“In the domestic market there is a one to five per cent tolerance in defects, but for the USA there is a very low tolerance.”

Mr Avolio’s fruit was carefully inspected with 100 lychees cut open to ensure there were no pests or defects.

This export success is the result of three year’s hard work by the Australian Lychee Growers Association (ALGA), the Federal Department of Agriculture and Water Resources (DAWR), Steritech Irradiation Facility, Horticulture Innovation Australia, lychee growers and export agents.

ALGA President Derek Foley said that the quality and taste of the exported Australian lychee had been well received by US consumers.

“The Australian lychee industry and lychee growers taking part in the three-year pilot program have worked hard to ensure shipments of Australian lychee pass all inspections and this will hopefully see the continuation of exports to the US,” Mr Foley said.

Just eight Queensland lychee growers agreed to take part in the program, which required growers’ orchards and packhouses to be audited by DAWR before they got approval to export to the US.

Only US and Australian compatible lychee chemicals could be used on the orchards and growers had to monitor their crops fortnightly to ensure there were no pests of quarantine concern.

Mr Nardi said the Australian lychees are very highly rated in the US in terms of quality so are able to command a premium price.

Exploring new markets is a key business strategy for the Queensland exporter.

“Developing protocols for new market access is the most important thing for our industry,” Mr Nardi said. “Australia has 24 million consumers and we often produce a more than we can use so new export markets are essential.”

The export success follows another first for the Queensland Fruit Company when Favco successfully shipped Australia’s first consignment of KP mangoes to the US in early 2016.

Read more on Queensland’s food and agribusiness sector or contact Trade & Investment Queensland to find out how to expand your business opportunities.

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Exporters create jobs, pay more and enjoy more success than non-exporters

Australian exporters produce more goods and services, employ more workers on higher wages, invest more capital and have a higher probability of long-term success than non-exporters, a recently released Federal Government study has found.

Australian exportersAustralian exporters produce more goods and services, employ more workers on higher wages, invest more capital and have a higher probability of long-term success than non-exporters, a recently released Federal Government study has found.

The research, produced by the Department of industry, Innovation and Science, compared the performance of 350,000 companies over 10 years to 2013-14.

Exporters on average employ 24 per cent more people, who are 13 per cent more productive and get 11.5 per cent higher wages compared to non-exporters. Exporters also commit 7 per cent more to capital expenditure.

Other key findings from the study:

  • Over a third of Australia’s exporters are concentrated in four industries: mining, manufacturing, wholesale trade and information media and telecommunications
  • Exporters grow faster than non-exporters in the lead up to foreign market entry but this growth difference diminishes in a few years
  • Continuous exporters perform significantly better in all performance measures than non-exporters
  • Exporting as associated with a higher probability of business survival

The Export behaviour and business performance research paper can be viewed in detail here.

Trade & Investment Queensland is the Queensland Government’s global business agency for business trade and investment and can help your business expand globally, connect with TIQ today.

February 2017

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Vodafone helps connect small businesses

Vodafone and the Queensland Government are teaming for 2017 Queensland Small Business Week to deliver a program designed to give small businesses the insights needed to start, grow and employ.

small businessesVodafone and the Queensland Government are teaming for 2017 Queensland Small Business Week to deliver a program designed to give small businesses the insights needed to start, grow and employ.

Queensland Small Business Week 2017 – themed Time to Thrive – is an opportunity for business owners to learn new skills and workshop new ideas so they can take their businesses to the next level.

It is also an opportunity to strengthen collaboration and connectivity between government, small businesses and key stakeholders.

More than 5,000 people are expected to take part in Queensland Small Business Week activities and events across the state.

State-wide more than 406,000 small businesses contribute $100 billion to the state’s economy.

Vodafone Chief Executive Officer Iñaki Berroeta said the company was looking forward to delivering this program in collaboration with the Queensland Government.

“Vodafone is excited to be at Queensland Small Business Week, and to show how the power of mobile technology can help Queenslanders do business,” Ms Berroeta said.

“Small businesses are the core of Australia’s economy, and the lifeblood of local communities. We are very proud to be supporting small businesses in Queensland, and to help business owners use connectivity to open up new doors and succeed.”

Local councils, chambers of commerce, individual businesses and Queensland Government agencies will deliver more than 100 events throughout the week.

Registrations for 2017 Queensland Small Business Week events will open in March at www.business.qld.gov.au/smallbusinessweek

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TIQ Japan exhibits at eco-tech fair

TIQ Japan recently exhibited at the 9th Kawasaki International Eco-Tech Fair which, held on 16th- 17th February in Kawasaki, showcases the advanced environmental technologies of the region.

TIQ Japan eco-tech fair

TIQ Trade Commissioner Tak Adachi joins Kawasaki Mayor Mr Norihiko Fukuda on stage at the opening ceremony of the ninth Kawasaki Eco-Tech Fair

A human air conditioner – a wearable cooling device that circulates ice cold water through tubes embedded in clothes – sounds like the perfect solution to Queensland’s sweltering summers.

This was just one example of the unique technologies on display at the ninth Kawasaki International Eco-Tech Fair that was held on 16-17 February and showcased advanced environmental technologies of the region.

TIQ Japan’s attendance at the fair builds on the close relationship between Queensland and the City of Kawasaki following the signing of a memorandum of understanding in 2011.

Over 15,000 people from Japan and around the world attended the fair, which provided an opportunity to promote Queensland’s renewable energy strategy and opportunities for partnerships with Queensland companies.

Although Queensland has a world-class reputation as a provider of high-quality coal to Japan, events like this are important to highlight the contribution that our state makes in other sectors, such as environmental technologies and renewable energy.

Read more on Queensland’s burgeoning knowledge industries sector or contact Trade & Investment Queensland to find out how to expand your business opportunities.

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Government to pursue climate change industry partnerships

The Queensland Government will partner with the state's agricultural sector to help growers prepare for a warmer climate.

climate change qld governmentThe Queensland Government will partner with the state’s agricultural sector to help growers prepare for a warmer climate.

A Queensland Climate Adaptation Directions survey found that the economic sectors that the government should prioritise for building adaptation partnerships are agriculture, biodiversity and ecosystems, business and industry, and built environment and infrastructure.

Respondents said that they felt infrastructure and assets most at risk from climate change included natural assets like the Great Barrier Reef, and national parks and reserves; and infrastructure such as water supply network, energy distribution network, buildings, transport networks and food production.

Around 72 per cent of responses indicated that extreme weather events presented the greatest risk, but rising temperatures, longer warm spells, altered rainfall patterns and rising sea levels were all identified by more than 35 per cent of respondents.

An increasing number of producers are embracing new technologies and more sustainable farming methods in response to the changing climate.

More than 270 Queenslanders had their say on how the state can meet the challenge of climate change.

Read more on Queensland’s burgeoning knowledge industries sector or contact Trade & Investment Queensland to find out how to expand your business opportunities.

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Queensland horticulture eyeing Asian market expansion

The Queensland Government is partnering with Horticulture Innovation Australia (HIA) to deliver a $16.5 million investment in the future of the state’s horticulture exports.

horticulture-queensland-mangoThe Queensland Government is partnering with Horticulture Innovation Australia (HIA) to deliver a $16.5 million investment in the future of the state’s horticulture exports.

Queensland has a hard-earned reputation for superior products with Asian consumers and this investment aims to retain and expand opportunities into lucrative Asian markets.

The four-year project will explore a tightening of export operations along all stages of the supply chain – from the way produce is packed, to how it is stored, to shortening the time from picking to arriving on supermarket shelves.

The project will help growers and producers better understand the condition of their products on arrival and their products’ ability to withstand in-country distribution to the retailer and consumer.

The project will be working across commodities and producers to make sure they are aware of the latest developments along the supply chain, and they have access to implementing this technology from the packing shed to the consumer’s shopping basket.

A number of leading producers, including mango, stonefruit and citrus growers, had already shown their interest in partnering with the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (DAF) in the project.

A project team consisting of DAF staff with extensive expertise in supply chain research would be based around Queensland to work with industry across commodities.

Horticulture Innovation Australia Chief Executive John Lloyd said the four-year project would ensure Asian markets enjoyed the best Australian produce possible.

“This project will have significance nationally so this is an exciting time for Australia’s horticulture exporters,” Mr Lloyd said.

“It’s no secret Australian produce is popular in Asian markets because of its high-quality and strong aesthetic. We look forward to working with the Queensland Government, and industry, to help propel the nation’s export offering to unprecedented levels.”

One of the foundation partners, mango grower and exporter Manbulloo, has already seen the value of the project through a scoping study to Korea and China this season.

Scott Ledger, Quality and Supply Chain Manager with the company said the knowledge they have gained from monitoring their supply chain has already proved the worth of the project for them.

“It will build on our current knowledge by developing real time monitoring systems that will enable us to deliver a more consistent, high quality product into these exciting markets,” he said.

Read more on Queensland’s food and agribusiness sector or contact Trade & Investment Queensland to find out how to expand your business opportunities.

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Australian eggs crack South Korean market for the first time

The land of the morning calm – Korea – is waking up to Queensland eggs for breakfast after sudden outbreaks of bird flu in late 2016 led to a massive cull of laying hens which has resulted in a shortage of eggs.

Sunny Queen Australian EggsThe land of the morning calm – Korea – is waking up to Queensland eggs for breakfast after sudden outbreaks of bird flu in late 2016 led to a massive cull of laying hens which has resulted in a shortage of eggs.

One of Australia’s biggest egg producers, Sunny Queen, is successfully exporting shell eggs to Korea for the first time to help them meet the shortfall in supply.

The first shipment from the Brisbane-based company received full customs clearance and quarantine approval from the local authorities in early February.

Sunny Queen Export Manager Steven Mai said the business is hopeful that this initial consignment will lead to an ongoing relationship with the egg producer and processor becoming better known to the Korea market.

“This has been fantastic opportunity for us and we are now looking ahead to exporting our high-valued processed egg products into the food service sectors in Korea,” Mr Mai said.

Trade and Investment Queensland (TIQ) has been assisting Sunny Queen since they began to explore options to export its processed egg products into Korea last year.

This included introducing the company to a number of buyers and food companies, assisting with market intelligence and helping successfully navigate the protocol restraints for market entry.

Read more on Queensland’s food and agribusiness sector or contact Trade & Investment Queensland to find out how to expand your business opportunities.

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