Monday, March 4, 2024

Western Sydney a food and grocery ‘powerhouse’

Western Sydney has become a “food and grocery manufacturing powerhouse”, according to the Australian Food and Grocery Council (AFGC).

The AFGC says the region generates $17 billion in output per year and employs 24,400 workers.

The research revealed that Parramatta is the food and grocery manufacturing capital of Sydney, employing 4,980 workers. Other key western areas include:

  • Blacktown (4,176 workers)
  • Canterbury Bankstown (3,914)
  • Cumberland (2,984)
  • Liverpool (2,154)
  • Campbelltown (2,113)
  • Fairfield (2,081)
  • Penrith (1,428)
  • Camden (562).

Western Sydney exports $2.5 billion of food and grocery manufacturing products a year, says AFGC. It also sells a further $5.7 billion to interstate and domestic regional markets. Between 2016 and 2017, international exports grew by 10.1 per cent.

Creating local jobs for a rising population 

AFGC CEO Tanya Barden says western Sydney’s current population of 2.1 million will grow by a further one million people over the next 18 years. It’s therefore critical, she says, to ensure jobs are available where people live.

“Since 2011, a total of 1,200 new jobs have been created across Blacktown, Camden, Campbelltown, Canterbury-Bankstown, Cumberland, Fairfield and Penrith,” she said.

“Importantly, these jobs allow residents to live and work in their own neighbourhoods, rather than facing a long-haul commute into the city. This takes pressure off our public-transport and road networks.”

Industry plays critical role

Ms Barden went on: “Food and grocery manufacturing has the fifth largest output of all industries in western Sydney, paying $138 million per annum in tax.

“Food and grocery manufacturing employers in western Sydney range from major global companies like Campbell Arnott’s in Huntingwood and Kimberly-Clark in Ingleburn, through to strong Australian brands like Coca-Cola Amatil in Northmead and smaller mum-and-dad operations.

“All these operations are dedicated to ensuring the safety and highest quality of their products.”

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