The Australian Food and Grocery Council has released its State of the Industry 2019-2020 report, in which, as the name suggests, it describes the state of the food and grocery industry. Obviously, this is an area that has encountered serious difficulties, in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic just in the wake of significantly damaging bushfires. The report describes these difficulties but for the most part presents a cautiously positive outlook.
During the 2019-20 baseline period, the value of Australia’s food and grocery manufacturing industry grew by 4% to almost $ 133 billion. This positive result is due to increased consumer purchases due to lockdowns and home care legislation. In addition, exports grew by a solid 7.9%, with China representing a large market for pharmaceuticals.
AFGC CEO Tanya Barden said the increase in exports of food and groceries – up 7.9% from the previous year to $ 41.3 billion – showed the importance of export markets for local manufacturers.
“In a time affected by drought, bushfires and the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, Australian food and grocery manufacturers have demonstrated their resilience and resourcefulness in increasing the value of this industry. vitally important, especially in overseas markets, ”Barden said.
Some unfortunate outcomes of the COVID-19 pandemic are increased costs brought on by COVID security requirements and changes in the logistics supply chain resulting in increased costs for retailers. Additionally, and unsurprisingly, consumers were unable to purchase food from restaurants, resulting in lower sales.
“These cost increases follow a decade where costs have risen at twice the rate of wholesale prices and there is a need for the industry to recoup costs in the future to maintain viable operations,” said Barden.
The main conclusions of the report are as follows:
- A 7.9% increase in the value of exports from the food and grocery manufacturing industry to $ 41.3 billion.
- A 12.1% increase in the value of imports to $ 39.9 billion.
- A slight increase in the share of food and groceries in total Australian manufacturing, up 0.4% to 32%.
- A slight drop (0.2%) in total employment in industry to 270,801 people.