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Central West Livestock exchange

Agricultural SME Logistics

Agricultural SME Logistics : meeting the paddock to plate challenge

The concept of “paddock to plate” – the consumer understanding and appreciating where their food comes from and how it gets to them from farms and processors – has become increasingly important over the past decade. But what happens in the middle, between the paddock and the plate, is often overlooked.

The logistics involved in getting the produce from the farmer to the consumer is complex and too often uneconomical and unsustainable for our regional producers.

One of the key observations in RDA Central West’s recently published  Value Adding to Agriculture report was that that connectivity to market is a key challenge for Central West NSW agricultural SMEs, who are a significant part of the regional economy.

On Tues 15 November 2016, RDA Central West co-ordinated the ‘Agricultural SME Logistics Workshop’, which brought together local producers, buyers and regional freight operators to understand the current issues and barriers from each perspective, and to consider possible alignments, collaboration and solutions.  The workshop was facilitated by the Institute for Supply Chain and Logistics (Victoria University) and focussed on the key question – How can the Central West region create a sustainable, cost effective distribution model for goods produced by small to medium sized agribusinesses?

Participants at the workshop reported making valuable new connections and networks and a number of potential collaborative solutions are now in the pipeline.

The report will be published here by June 2017.