Food and grocery maintains strength despite pandemic pressure

The Australian Food and Grocery Council’s (AFGC) State of Industry (SOI) 2022 report shows a 0.9 per cent increase in turnover for food and grocery manufacturing despite a 17.1 per cent fall in the value of exports.

The report showed that the industry increased its value to $133.6 billion in 2020/21, despite the pandemic, the war in Ukraine, and supply chain disruptions, with consumers stocking up and panic buying driving a nine per cent rise in domestic spending.

Tanya Barden, CEO of the AFGC, said food and grocery manufacturing plays a vital role in keeping our supermarket shelves full.

“These figures predate the unprecedented impacts of this year’s heavy flooding in eastern and central Australia, as well as the war in Ukraine. The pressures manufacturers were facing a year ago have intensified to the point where the viability of some businesses could be at risk.”

Food and grocery manufacturing accounts for 32.1 percent of all Australian manufacturing activity, making it the largest manufacturing sector. Employment in the sector increased 0.8 per cent to 272,800 people, with 40.3 per cent of the workforce in regional areas.

Barden said now is the time to invest in new skills, technologies, and infrastructure to build industry resilience.

“The federal government has shown it understands the importance of supporting Australia’s competitive strengths, identifying food processing among the priority areas for its National Reconstruction Fund.”

Despite the fall in exports, China remains the largest export destination for food, beverage, and grocery exports at $7.3 billion. The largest increase in exports came from Vietnam, up 13.8 per cent to $796 million.

“Investment in Australia’s food and grocery manufacturing industry is an investment in the future and our sovereign manufacturing capacity,” said Barden.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top