Western Australian government pours money into dairy industry

The government of Western Australia is backing the dairy industry by providing $200,000 to help strengthen and grow WA.

It is hoped funding will attract co-investment in dairy research and development to capture milk processing and export opportunities.

Agriculture and food minister Alannah MacTiernan announced the new funding to support local research and development over the next two years.

“This funding will give our dairy farmers access to targeted technical and scientific support to continue adapting to the ongoing demands of the milk market,” she said.

READ: Corangamite Shire’s agribusiness sector gets funding boost from government

The investment will enable Western Dairy, industry’s independent research and development arm, to build on its achievements since its inception three years ago.

The organisation has successfully established a research, development and extension hub to focus on local production challenges and opportunities, guided by the industry.

The state government’s contribution will enable Western Dairy to attract co-investment from industry partners to add value to projects that increase profitability and build a long-term sustainable industry.

“We’re seeing positive developments in the WA dairy industry in the milk processing and export sectors, and it is important that industry is able to capitalise on these and other opportunities,” said MacTiernan.

“Western Dairy has played a pivotal role in supporting producers with business improvement through its dairy farm monitor program, as well as exploring pasture solutions to address the challenge of the seasonal feed gap.”

The WA dairy industry had demonstrated its resilience and capacity to embrace change and opportunities to provide Australian and international consumers with safe, high quality milk, said MacTiernan.

The Victorian state government also invested $260,000 in the agribusiness sector recently.

Corangamite Shire’s got more funding to boost the productivity farm businesses and their supply chains.

The investment is part of the Local Roads to Market program.

Rabobank appoints new group executive with extensive knowledge of food and agribusiness sector

Rabobank Australia and New Zealand has appointed Karin van Selm as group executive for wholesale banking.

In her current role, as the bank’s general manager of corporate banking, van Selm provides for the increasingly complex requirements of Rabobank’s large corporate clients operating in the food and agribusiness sector.

She’s worked in her current role with Rabobank since January 2016.

Rabobank Australia and New Zealand managing director Peter Knoblanche said van Selm was ideally placed to take on the position of group executive to ensure a seamless continuation of the expansion and development of Rabobank’s wholesale banking operation.

READ: Shift in rankings of companies listed in Rabobank Global Dairy Top 20

“Karin has extensive experience and exceptional understanding of the corporate banking needs of major companies involved in the food and agricultural sector,” said Knoblanche.

Rabobank is one of Australia’s largest agricultural banks and a major provider of specialist corporate financial services to the region’s food and agribusiness sector.

Van Selm worked in structured finance at ING Barings, before moving to Australia in 2005, from the Netherlands.

She then joined Westpac, where she worked in various roles in the banking consumer and agribusiness team.

She holds a Master of Laws, specialising in international tax and economics.

Van Selm said the future opportunities for Australia and New Zealand’s corporate food and agribusiness were exciting, with both countries producing world-class agricultural produce and with rapidly-growing export markets.

“That said, businesses in the F&A sector are challenged to remain competitive in the various commodity markets, faced with increasing costs of labour, water, energy and insurance, as well as stricter regulatory environments,” she said.

“Rabobank, with its both global and local reach in food and agriculture, and its deep understanding of the various segments of the agri market, is well positioned to enable, facilitate and connect our clients in the value chain and support them with their growth ambitions,” said van Selm.

She will start the new role on the 1st of August, taking over from Els Kamphof, who has been appointed to head the regional wholesale banking operations in the Netherlands and Africa.