Last Updated: August 20, 2014

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Horticulture

AusVeg push on new vegetable products for Australian growers

AUSTRALIA is lagging behind the rest of the world when it comes to launching new vegetable products.

Less than two per cent of those introduced internationally are marketed in this country, according a report released by AusVeg.

Spokesperson Tim Shue said there was an opportunity for vegetable farmers to find other ways of getting their crops to consumers.

“Creativity, lateral thinking and an active engagement with global experts in produce innovation could help the industry access new domestic and international markets,” he said.

“New product types may help relieve pressures placed on growers by retailers. Vegetables that don’t make the grade could be transformed into new products rather than going to waste.”

Green bean ice-cream, vegetable garden cream cheeses, instant pumpkin desserts, yoghurts and vegetable chips are just some of the thousands of products recently launched overseas.

“By exposing the Australian industry to research and development being conducted globally, we hope to excite businesses with innovative ideas about how Australian vegetables could be transformed and consumed.

“While the fresh market may remain the focus for Australia, other countries throughout Asia, Europe and the US have been investing in novel vegetable products, and this indicates that there are definitely markets out there,” Mr Shue said.

Australians who pay vegetable levies have been invited to attend a Produce Innovation Seminar at the Cairns Convention Centre on Thursday, June 19.

The event will feature US and European leaders in product innovation and sensory science, including David Lundahl, PhD, founder and CEO of InsightsNow Inc. and Rob Baan, CEO of Koppert Cress.

AusVeg is Australia’s leading horticultural body, representing 9000 vegetable and potato growers.

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