|Covering over 27,000 square kilometres, the GMID region incorporates the municipalities of Greater Shepparton, Swan Hill, Campaspe, Moira, Gannawarra and Loddon and accommodates a population of over 160,000 people.|
Irrigation-based industries including dairy, horticulture and viticulture; dry land farming operations; and agriculture-related industries such as food processing, packaging, transport and specialist engineering and electrical trades provide employment for many of the region's 84,000-strong workforce.
|The GMID produces more than half of Australia's nectarines, peaches and plums and almost three quarters of the nation's pear crop. It is also a substantial apricot producer, has a burgeoning almond and olive-growing industry and produces just under a quarter of Australia's milk, either as fresh milk or value-added butter, cheese, yoghurt and dried milk products. |
These significant levels of fruit and dairy production have resulted in major food processors - including iconic brand SPC-Ardmona, Tatura Milk, Australia's largest dairy processing company Murray Goulburn and the world's largest food and beverage company Nestle - establishing multiple sites across the region to capitalise on the cost savings to be gained by their proximity to key suppliers.
Equally attractive to industry is the region's extensive transport network. Major highways, including the Goulburn Valley, Murray Valley, Calder and Loddon Valley Â highways, criss-cross the region and connect to interstate routes including one of Australia's most important thoroughfares, the Hume. This road network and the recently upgraded freight and passenger rail system provide businesses and industries in the GMID with direct access to all major ports and markets in south-east Australia.
At the heart of Northern Victoria and within easy driving distance of Melbourne, the snow fields and other popular tourism destinations, the region's attractive river plains, Mediterranean climate and affordable lifestyle make it an appealing option for those seeking a "tree-change".
The GMID's strong retail, tourism, education and healthcare sectors provide significant alternative employment opportunities to agriculture-related business and ensure the region has a diversified workforce, offering a range of skills attractive to prospective employers.
The region's university and TAFE campuses provide valuable training and career-development opportunities, with many of the course offered tailored to meet the specific skill demands of the agriculture, health, education and manufacturing sectors.
Underpinning the region's reputation as Victoria's Food Bowl, is its reliable water supply. Despite years of drought and the effects of climate change, Northern Victorian irrigators' access to this most precious of resources has ensured it remains the engine room of Australian agriculture. The commitment by state and federal governments to upgrade its irrigation infrastructure guarantees this reputation.
These factors; substantial federal, state and local government initiatives encouraging people to live, work and invest in provincial Victoria; and a secure water supply thanks to recent record investment in irrigation infrastructure upgrades, make the region increasingly attractive to professionals, investors and industries keen to establish or expand their business in a supported and sustainable environment.