7 November 2018

A re-elected Andrews Labor Government will grow the Yarra Valley’s small-scale agribusiness, creating jobs and attracting more visitors from interstate and overseas to enjoy our world-leading locally-made food, beer and spirits.

Across Victoria there are thousands of small businesses making and growing some of the world’s best produce – from craft beer to cheese and distilling industries – but we want to help these businesses grow even further.

Minister for Agriculture Jaala Pulford today joined Labor Candidate for Eildon Sally Brennan in Healesville to meet local businesses and outline Labor’s plan to establish a $10 million grant fund for small-scale agribusiness that produce craft food, beer and spirits to help them achieve even greater things on the world stage.

Grants of up to $200,000 will be available to producers who can show that the investment will help them scale up their operations and create new, local jobs.

Victoria is the epicentre of the craft beer revolution in Australia, with Yarra Valley breweries such as Hargreaves Hill, Coldstream, Watts River and Napoleone taking on the nation and beyond.

We want to support Yarra Valley craft businesses and help them take their products and expertise to the world – supporting the region’s economy and creating more local jobs.

Meeting the brewers at Watts River Brewing

Watts River Brewing in Healesville

Last year, this industry employed more 6,000 people, invested $32.5 million in capital expenditure and generated $229 million in economic activity.

Around 65 per cent of all craft brewers in Australia are located in regional and rural areas, showing just how important these businesses are to local economies.

Labor will also create a small-scale producers Ministerial Advisory Committee, including representatives from small-scale brewing, dairy, livestock, distilling, horticulture and other businesses.

This builds on the Labor Government’s $2 million investment in the Victorian Budget 2018/19 for grants towards Victoria’s specialist food producers.