An Ipswich business exporting healthy pet treats is helping to upskill Queensland prisoners, with its products made by inmates at the Borallon Training and Correctional Centre.

Golden Bone Bakery manufactures veterinarian-approved healthy dog treats that are free from preservatives, artificial colours and flavours, and added salt and sugar.

The business is part of the workRestart program, a social enterprise initiative where businesses set up part of their operations in prisons, providing employment opportunities for offenders.

Golden Bone owners Reiner Adolfsen and Katharina von Heusinger say the program has benefits both for them and the inmates involved.

‘Businesses like ours set up a part of our operation inside the prison and we provide jobs and training for offenders,’ Ms von Heusinger said.

‘The program aims to build prisoners’ skills and self-confidence, to improve their chances of obtaining stable post-release employment, and to reduce their risk of re-offending.

‘This is good for the prisoners and their communities, and also good for our reputation as a business.’

Golden Bone launched its pet treats in Singapore late last year, and has received a follow-up order from their Singapore stockist.

The company is now looking to export to Japan, Thailand, Germany, the Netherlands and the UK.

Ms von Heusinger said TIQ had been a great help in securing their first export order to Singapore.

‘We are a member of the Entrepreneurs Hub Fire Station 101 in Ipswich, where we met our local TIQ Trade and Investment Officer, Julie Mark,’ Ms von Heusinger said.

‘As soon as we heard about the export opportunity to Singapore, we reached out to Julie for advice.

‘Julie and the TIQ team supported us from the beginning with their extensive knowledge and experience with export regulations and by connecting us with the right people.’

For more information on the workRestart initiative, visit the program website, or for support in your own export journey, connect with TIQ.

Supporting exporters is a key target of the Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022.