Gippsland’s vital food and fibre sector is set to benefit with seven local businesses selected to participate in a new innovative initiative, backed by the Andrews Labor Government.

Member for Eastern Victoria Harriet Shing today announced the successful businesses that will be supported with research and advice through the Gippsland Regional Partnership’s Driving Gippsland’s Food and Fibre Agenda program.

The ‘What’s Your Food or Fibre Challenge, Gippsland? will help businesses take an innovative approach to challenges faced within the vital food and fibre industry, with approximately 2,500 local businesses relying on the $7 billion sector.

The successful businesses are Gunaikurnai Land and Waters Aboriginal Corporation, Bulmer Farms, Kiel Industries, Ingram Wild Caught Fisheries, Gurney Cider, South Gippsland Dairy and Gippsland Jersey.

Their ideas include bush food business opportunities, making fish sauce from carp, as well as the feasibility of a central Gippsland Jersey manufacturing plant.

After engaging with the local community, the Gippsland Regional Partnership successfully advocated to the Victorian Government for greater investment in the sector, securing $700,000 to deliver a local action plan.

What’s Your Food or Fibre Challenge, Gippsland?’ is supported by Regional Development Victoria, Federation University, Food and Fibre Gippsland, Food Agility CRC, Food Innovation Australia Limited, Latrobe Valley Authority, TAFE Gippsland and the Committee for Gippsland.

It forms part of the Labor Government’s almost $30 billion investment in rural and regional Victoria since 2015.

Quotes attributable to Member for Eastern Victoria Harriet Shing:

“Congratulations to the successful businesses on their innovative plans to grow Gippsland’s food and fibre sector and to the Gippsland Regional Partnership and this project’s many supporters.”

Quotes attributable to Member for Eastern Victoria Jane Garrett:

“I’m delighted we have been able to assist in nurturing these businesses and I can’t wait to see how these transformative projects take shape.”

Quote attributable to Gippsland Regional Partnership Chair, Therese Tierney:

“We extend our congratulations to the successful businesses and we wish them well in solving their challenges, and hopefully, converting them to opportunities.”

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