Home > Australia is not going to be Asia's food bowl: Barnaby Joyce

Australia is not going to be Asia's food bowl: Barnaby Joyce

article image

Agriculture Minister Barnaby Joyce says that Australia should be focusing on marketing its agricultural outputs as premium products rather than attempting to become Asia’s food bowl.

As it stands, Australia’s exports to the South East Asian region represents enough to feed 60 million people out of a future three billion middleclass consumers. Analysts say that Australia has the capacity to double its output to about 120 million but Joyce believes that the focus should on quality, not quantity.

Joyce told The Weekly Times that it was ‘ridiculous’ to think that Australia could feed the estimated three billion South East Asian middle class consumers by 2030, and that the 'food bowl' concept was read as a threat overseas.

“Indonesian farmers don’t want to hear that the only cattle that will be available for market will be Australian cattle,” said Joyce.

Joyce is currently studying the successful NZ 100% Prue brand campaign, and has been in discussions with senior ministers about developing a similar style of strategy for Australian produce.

“If we all go off as rats and mice, here, there and everywhere, then we won’t have a consistent approach,” he said.

The government will be releasing a green paper within the coming weeks outlining potential strategies to both boost Australia’s agricultural sector, and capitalise on opportunities in the SEA region. A white paper detailing the chosen strategy is expected to be released by the end of the year.

Image: The Age

Newsletter sign-up

The latest products and news delivered to your inbox