The State Liberals have released a discussion paper into the Australian distilled spirits industry to increase the sectors long-term viability.
“This discussion paper provides a starting point for conversations between industry participants about the barriers that are preventing the Australian distilled spirits industry from reaching its full potential,” said Shadow Minister for Agriculture, Food and Wine David Ridgway.
The discussion paper will culminate on 5 August with an Australian Distilled Spirits Forum to be hosted in Adelaide by Mr Ridgway, giving stakeholders and industry an opportunity to discuss the findings.
“From our initial correspondence we know that there are currently a host of barriers reducing business’ competitiveness and impeding their entry into this profitable market,” said Mr Ridgway.
“We’re looking to identify these barriers and find out what industry and other stakeholders believe can be done to remove these obstacles and enhance this burgeoning industry.”
Key objectives of the discussion paper and associated consultation process include:
- Identifying the key barriers that reduce industry participants’ competitiveness or slow their entry into the market;
- Identifying areas for research to enable the industry to further enhance their products and production techniques;
- Understanding the supply chain and identifying where gaps may exist; for example, the depth of the labour market for engineers and related services and the availability of key manufacturing equipment and capabilities;
- Educating key decision-makers and regulators about the potential of the industry and the barriers which need to be removed in order for this potential to be realised; and
- Exploring potential solutions for the removal of these barriers - in partnership between industry participants and decision-makers.
The distilled spirits industry has the capacity to enrich many of its supporting industries and be a great contributor to South Australia’s economy, exports and jobs market.
“South Australian barley producers, logistics companies, manufacturers are just some of the local businesses set to benefit from the evolution of the distillery industry.
“Not only is it good for local business but the GST value for malting barley is around $7 922 per tonne. With 2.5 million tonnes being produced in Australia each year it’s also lucrative for the Government.
“Also from a tourism perspective, it’s another string to SA’s bow, adding to our unparalleled food and wine sector that already brings in a substantial portion of our state’s domestic and international tourists.”
Mr Ridgway believes South Australia is well poised to become the nation’s centre for excellence for all primary industries research and innovation.
“The University of Adelaide Waite Campus has previously invested in substantial distillery facilities, meaning South Australia already has the infrastructure and technical expertise to facilitate the expansion of the distillery industry,” Mr Ridgway said.
Submissions can be lodged via ADSDP@parliament.sa.gov.au, with submissions closing 5:00PM Friday 17 July 2015.