The Business of Agribusiness event at Newbridge

Published on 20 May 2015

An active program of trade missions and a push for new markets for Victorian produce will underlie the state government’s approach to supporting farmers in 2015.

So says Victorian Agriculture Minister Jaala Pulford, who will travel to Newbridge next month to address a targeted forum aimed at exploring new opportunities for agribusiness in the region.

“The Business of Agribusiness” will be hosted by the Loddon Shire and the Central Victorian Agribusiness Forum on June 2 at Newbridge recreation reserve clubrooms.

Morning tea and lunch will be provided.

The event will be a one-day seminar with a list of 10 speakers headed by Minister Pulford, but also including Loddon Shire Mayor Cr Gavan Holt, Victorian Farmers Federation president Peter Tuohey, Andrew Smith from Rural Finance and Tom Russo, of Elders Ltd.

Organisers are aiming to identify and build on growth opportunities, offer insights on local and foreign investment and share some notable success stories.

Minister Pulford said Victoria accounted for more than 50 per cent of Australia’s horticulture exports, which are valued at $894 million.

“Horticulture is a large regional employer with more than 9,000 people employed in the sector,” she said.

“Last financial year alone, the value of all meat exports from Victoria surged 36 per cent to $2.3 billion. Of that total, Victorian beef exports account for 44 per cent and are valued at $1 billion.

“The government is working closely with industry and the Commonwealth to capitalise on free trade agreements and access to new markets.

“We’ll continue to showcase Victoria’s quality exports to key international customers via a series of inbound and outbound trade missions scheduled throughout 2015.”

Hazeldene’s corporate affairs manager, Vicki Gaudion, will also take the podium to speak on the company’s operations in Loddon Shire and its future plans.

“Our message is that we have multiple sites in Loddon, we employ both skilled and unskilled labour and we are happy to train willing workers,” Ms Gaudion said.

“The value of this sort of event is to educate participants on what we do and why we do it and help people understand what we are trying to achieve.

“I trust this event will encourage the development of a range of potential opportunities, not just for us, but for others present.”
General Manager, Sales and Business Development, for Rural Finance and Rural Bank Andrew Smith sees the forum as “a valuable opportunity for industry and local agribusiness operators to come together and discuss their opportunities and challenges”.

“We understand the importance of providing good information for farmers and we value the opportunity to share relevant information and analysis from our own insights division, Ag Answers, at Newbridge,” he said.

“It’s a great chance to celebrate and learn from success stories in the region and beyond and gain insights to enable the sector to leverage growth opportunities.”

From 1 July 2014, Rural Finance joined Rural Bank as a wholly-owned subsidiary of Bendigo and Adelaide Bank Limited.

A member of the Group since 2010, Rural Bank is the only Australian-owned and operated dedicated agribusiness bank in the country.

The Central Victorian Agribusiness Forum’s agenda is focused on supporting agribusinesses in the Gannawarra, Loddon, Central Goldfields, Campaspe and Mount Alexander Shires and the City of Greater Bendigo.

Tickets to the forum cost $55 and can be booked online. Go to or
For more details, phone Martin Szakal on 0421 324 509.

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