THE State Government is supporting beef producers in Gippsland to find export markets to expand their business.
Minister for Agriculture Jaala Pulford announced last week that Gippsland Natural Meats has been awarded a Food Source Victoria Planning and Growth Grant to move the business to the next stage in its development.
“The grant will help the Gippsland Natural Meat brand continue to grow, find new markets and support jobs,” Ms Pulford said.
It will allow the company to expand the marketing and sales side of their business and develop relationships in target markets more quickly and professionally.
Gippsland Natural Meats was one of the first groups to recognise the brand power of beef produced under free range, grass fed production systems.
This strong brand, underpinned with environmental credentials and Meat Standard Australia grading, has helped them establish a presence in the domestic beef market.
Customers can already order direct from the Gippsland Natural Meats online store, and their beef is supplied to retail butchers and high-end restaurants in Melbourne and across Victoria.
They also have developed a range of partnerships in value-added products such as hamburgers, pies and healthy meal solutions, and even ethically-raised, high welfare dog food.
Gippsland Natural Meats supplies premium steaks into the signature Grain and Grass restaurant at the Australian Open Tennis each year, and hamburgers and other beef cuts to Melbourne Park and Etihad Stadium.
Gippsland Natural Meat director Paul Crock said the Food Source Victoria grant will be used to take that expertise to the export market.
“This grant allows us to do exactly what we should be doing, pushing high quality, sustainably produced grass fed beef product into the export market.”
Member for Eastern Victoria Harriet Shing said the grant is great news for Gippsland Natural Meats.
“It speaks volumes about the quality of our produce right across Gippsland.”
The government’s $20 million Food Source Victoria program is funded through the government’s $500 million Regional Jobs and Infrastructure Fund and supports Victorian agri-food businesses to conduct research, develop marketing plans, produce innovative products and build skills to better compete in export markets.