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Southern Forests Food Council to grow region’s gourmet potential

The Council has been working to promote the Southern Forests as an internationally recognised gourmet food region and culinary tourism destination for more than a decade.

The Cook Government is helping create opportunities for farmers and food and beverage businesses in Western Australia’s South West region, with $725,000 of funding for the Southern Forests Food Council.

The Council has been working to promote the Southern Forests as an internationally recognised gourmet food region and culinary tourism destination for more than a decade.

The region, which spans Manjimup, Pemberton, Northcliffe, Walpole, Bridgetown, Greenbushes and Nannup, is renowned for its premium quality fruit and vegetables, truffles, nuts, wine, beef, sheep and dairy farms.

“The Southern Forests Food Council plays an important role in helping local producers, culinary and tourism operators to thrive and increase their contribution to the region’s economy, stimulating growth and jobs,” said Regional Development Minister Don Punch.

“This funding will assist the Council to build on the gains it has made to pursue further trade and investment in the diverse range of businesses and industries in this beautiful part of our State.”

The ‘Genuinely Southern Forests’ brand identifies the region’s produce and producers, which partners with the WA Government’s Buy West Eat Best food labelling program.

The funding will enable the Council to focus on activities and implement strategies that secure its long-term sustainability and enhance the brand.

The Council has fostered strong partnerships between wholesalers, retailers, chefs and Government to come together and work towards a common goal of optimising the potential of the Southern Forests.

The Council is also building a stronger future for the region working through the South West WA Drought Resilience Adoption and Innovation Hub, supported by the Federal Government’s Future Drought Fund.

“From world-class truffles to wine, marron as well as fresh fruit and vegetables, the Southern Forest region is one of Australia’s premier food bowls,” said Agriculture and Food Minister Jackie Jarvis.

“This funding will help the Southern Forests Food Council to continue to promote the region’s premium produce on the domestic and international stage as well as drive trade opportunities.

“The ‘Genuinely Southern Forests’ brand also partners with the State Government’s successful Buy West Eat Best food labelling program, allowing customers to easily recognise fresh produce from our regions on supermarket shelves.”

The funding consists of $425,000 previously allocated to Southern Forests Food Council and $300,000 in new funding.

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