Australia might turn into food superpower, PM says
SYDNEY - Agence France-Presse
Australia’s PM Julia Gillard poses next to an orchid hybrid, the Dendrobium Julia Gillard, named after her in a ceremony at the Singapore Botanical Gardens.REUTERS photoAustralia has the potential to become a food superpower for Asia, Prime Minister Julia Gillard said
in a speech in which she urged greater commercial engagement with China.
Australia’s economy is riding a mining and resources boom, but Gillard said the vast nation should also exploit its ability to produce high-quality food.
“Just as we have become a minerals and energy giant, Australia can be a great provider of
reliable, high-quality food to meet Asia’s growing needs,” Gillard said in the speech to The Global Foundation in Melbourne late on May 3.
She said Australia should take advantage of growing international markets and become “a provider of higher-value products and services for the global food industry”.
Despite living on the world’s driest inhabited continent, Australians have enjoyed safe and high-quality food for many decades, with the nation producing enough to feed 60 million people, almost three times its population.
Australia accounts for less than three percent of global food trade, although it is among the net food exporting nations of the world, a government report published in late 2010 said.