V&V Walsh, a West Australian meat processor, has signed a deal worth an estimated $1 billion with China’s Grand Farm.
According to the ABC, the agreement between V&V Walsh, located in Bunbury Western Australia, Grand Farm and the Inner Mongolian government was first struck in June but was signed on 4 August.
It will see V&V Walsh provide boxed meat to Grand Farm, with the meat processor requiring an additional 500,000 lambs and 30,000 cattle per year during the first stage of the five year agreement.
Despite being China’s largest red meat importer, Grand Farm only supplies to one percent of the Chinese market, with plans to increase this to three percent.
WA Agriculture Minister Ken Baston, said Australia needs to address productivity to ensure supply can meet demand.
"The total cattle in Western Australia of 1.9 million and our sheep numbers are down to about 15.5 million so we have to increase productivity," he said.
"Finding markets of course increases demand and productivity is the next thing we need to match.
"We used to have a sheep industry here once of some 38 million sheep, we're now down to 15, so we've got a long way to improve."