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New Victorian career and training info portal launched: Victorian Skills Gateway

Thursday, December 6th, 2012

bigstock_careers_sign_8044887

Victorian Skills Gateway

From the Minister for Higher Education and Skills, the Hon Peter Hall, media release 2 December 2012:

Students can now match their career dreams to the right training thanks to a new website launched today.

Skills Minister Peter Hall said the Victorian Skills Gateway took the hassle out of searching for the right course.

Gone are the days of hours spent searching through the websites of individual training providers,” Mr Hall said.

This makes it easy. Select a career, click the mouse, and all training options available in Victoria for that job are laid out.

“Whether it’s school leavers, or those looking for a job change, this website will prove to be a useful tool.

Victorians looking for work can see which skills are most in demand, maximising their chance of employment,” Mr Hall said
“You can scroll through the list, read about job prospects, look at case studies and then get information on the courses needed.

See full media release here


Full- fat milk and cheese cut risk by 60 percent

Friday, November 30th, 2012

milkFrom the Dairy Australia website, 29 November 2012

Australian-first research has shown regular-fat dairy foods such as milk and cheese are not the heart health villains they were once thought to be. A 10-year study of 1800 people found those eating two serves1 a day of regular-fat dairy food more than halved their risk of developing the health-threatening metabolic syndrome.

Researchers from the University of Wollongong and the University of Sydney examined the long-term link between consuming dairy foods and a clustering of conditions that increase risk of heart disease, stroke and type-2 diabetes, called the metabolic syndrome.

The independent research just published in the Journal of Nutrition, Metabolism and Cardiovascular Diseases followed adult Australians (aged 49 years and above) from the Blue Mountains, west of Sydney. Researchers looked at the participants’ intake of dairy foods and likelihood of developing the metabolic syndrome over the next 10 years.

The researchers found that the risk of developing metabolic syndrome was approximately 60% lower in participants who had two serves of regular-fat dairy foods each day, compared with those who consumed less than one serve.

The same pattern was not found with low or reduced-fat dairy. Associate Professor Vicki Flood, one of the lead researchers, said the results of this Australian study are consistent with some global findings that having a higher intake of regular-fat dairy foods helps protect against metabolic syndrome. “Dairy foods such as milk, cheese and yogurt, naturally contain a unique package of more than 10 essential nutrients such as high-quality protein, calcium and potassium,” she said.

“With 73% of female and 58% of male adults not consuming the minimum recommended intake of dairy each day, it is more important that Australians get the health benefits of eating enough dairy foods rather than being hung up on the fat content.” The research was part-funded by Dairy Australia but fully independent in line with research protocols.

See full news release here for references and contacts.


Invitation – How to reduce energy costs project presentations 12 Nov RMIT Bundoora

Wednesday, October 3rd, 2012

Hydrogen Truck-16-Edit-WEB smYou are invited to a morning of presentations on energy reduction projects. Don’t miss this – one of the best partnerships of Industry and Education in Victoria!

8.30am – 12 noon, Monday, 12 November 2012
Building 224, RMIT University West Campus (off Plenty Rd) Bundoora

Featuring company case studies from: Armstrong World Industries, BTI Logistics, Capral, Continental Automotive, Colonial First State, Food Plastics, Nestle, Melbourne Water, Olex, PWB Anchor, William Adams

RSVP to Deb Redmond, NORTH Link, by 9th November 2012 by email to        d.redmond@latrobe.edu.au

Telephone 03 9479 3339 for further information.

These RMIT University final-year Bachelor of Engineering and Master of Engineering (Sustainable Energy) students will present energy and emission reduction case studies undertaken this year with sixteen companies. These case studies will provide your organisation with a great opportunity to obtain and discuss new ideas on energy cost cutting and greenhouse gas abatement in the coming emissions trading era.


Consumer survey shows popularity of local produce

Thursday, September 20th, 2012

Australia on globe

From the Australian Food News website, 19 Sept 2012:

A recent Roy Morgan survey commissioned by the Australian Made Campaign has shown that Australians still prefer to purchase local produce, with 9 in 10 people stating they purchase Australian made or grown food over cheaper imports.

The online survey of 1200 adults showed that although 90 percent of people prefer Australian produce, not all of them were clear on the term ‘Australian Made.’

Only 1 in 3 people surveyed knew that Australian Made meant that the product had been made here and more than 50 percent of the cost of making the product occurred here. Moreover, 4 in 10 people indicated that they had difficulty identifying if a product was Australian Made.

Australian Made Campaign Chief, Ian Harrison said that Australian’s continued to purchase local produce due to confidence in safety and quality.

Other Australian industries such as furniture, clothing and household appliances have been forced out of the market by cheaper international imports, with less than 50 percent of those surveyed indicating they would opt for the more expensive, Australian Made goods.

See whole story here.


Senate Committee Report on Food Processing Out

Friday, August 24th, 2012

Australia on globe

16 August 2012

35 Recommendations and 258 Pages….. covering the labour market; the taxation and regulatory environment; the retail environment; food labelling; biosecurity and food safety; innovation and research; exports and the committee’s conclusion.

Industry visits included:
• Campbell Arnott’s factory, near Shepparton, Victoria;
• SPC Ardmona factory, Shepparton, Victoria;
• Simplot factories, Quoiba and Ulverstone, Tasmania;
• Field Fresh, Forth, Tasmania;
• Vili’s Bakery, Adelaide;
• Haigh’s Chocolates, Adelaide;
• Standom Smallgoods, Adelaide, South Australia;
• Gawler River Cattle Company, Adelaide South Australia;
• Cooper’s Brewery, Adelaide, South Australia;
• Fremantle Octopus Company, Western Australia;
• Geraldton Fishermen’s Co‐operative, Western Australia;
• Kailis Bros, Canning Vale, Western Australia;
• Anchor Foods, Fremantle, Western Australia;
• Canon Foods, Canning Vale, Western Australia; and
• Mrs Mac’s, Morley, Western Australia.

Excerpts below:

1.10 The economic significance of Australia’s broader food industry was emphasised by submitters to the inquiry. Positioning the food manufacturing sector within Australia’s other manufacturing industries, the Australian Food and Grocery Council highlighted the sector’s scale:

Representing 28 per cent of total manufacturing turnover, the sector is comparable in size to the Australian mining sector and is more than four times larger than the automotive sector… The growing and sustainable industry is made up of 38,000 businesses…2

1.11 Similarly, the Australian Made Australian Grown Campaign highlighted the sector’s contribution to job growth:

The manufacturing sector is fundamentally important to the Australian economy, especially in terms of jobs, skills and training opportunities, exports and innovation. It is also critical to the fabric of Australian society because of the multiplier effect of the opportunities it creates and its strategic importance to Australia’s economic and national security. The food processing sector is a major part of that, with particular importance as a regional employer and for food security reasons.3

See the full Report on the Parliament website here


Costco looking to source new deals in the Australian market

Tuesday, August 21st, 2012

frais farm spinach

From the Australian Food News website 6 August 2012,

With the opening of another Melbourne store set for late 2013, the retailing giant Costco’s commitment to using local Australian produce will see a demand for additional new suppliers. This is a welcome opportunity for Australian food businesses.

A substantial number of local producers are already benefitting from Costco’s arrival in Australia. For example, Costco’s highly commended beef is a grain-fed premium product coming out of Swift Australia’s Beef City feedlot in Toowoomba, Queensland. Meanwhile Baiada Poultry has been supplying its well-regarded Lilydale free-range chicken and Steggle’s fresh and crumbed poultry lines to Costco from the inception of the first Costco store opening in Melbourne in 2009.

The American supermarket giant has had a major impact in the Australian fresh produce market since opening its first store in Melbourne’s Docklands in 2009. This was followed by Canberra and Sydney stores opening in July 2011.

Frais Farm in East Gippsland is an example of a smaller producer who has developed with great success following big orders from Costco.

Costco has been sourcing breads and speciality baked products from a number of private bakeries, not only from Melbourne, but from regional cities such as Ballarat.

Read article here


Gusto! A culinary history of Victoria

Thursday, August 2nd, 2012

cake_icing_decoratingState Library of Victoria here

Friday 3 August 2012Sunday 28 April 2013

Free

Gusto! explores Victoria’s historic and contemporary culinary landscape, covering subjects such as the history of viticulture, Indigenous foods, sustainable food practices, fine dining and food rationing, and also features the fascinating stories of significant Victorian culinary figures including Jacques Reymond, Rita Erlich, Guy Grossi and Stephanie Alexander.

The exhibition is complemented by a full program of events and activities.


Updated Meat and Food Processing Purchasing Guides now on TSN

Wednesday, August 1st, 2012

tsn_main_logoPlease see the two new Purchasing Guides for Victoria – covering FDF10v3 and MTM11v2. Go to the TSN website to download.

FDF10 Food Processing Industry Training Package – Version 3 includes new qualifications and units for Sugar Milling Industry Operations as follows:

  • FDF11012 Certificate I in Sugar Milling Industry Operations
  • FDF21012 Certificate II in Sugar Milling Industry Operations
  • FDF31012 Certificate III in Sugar Milling Industry Operations

There are also new Units for:

  • Grains (Malting)  and
  • Operations (Brewing)

MTM11 Australian Meat Industry Training Package, Version 2.

Version 2 includes one new unit: MTMP3004A – Assess effective stunning and bleeding. This unit has been added to the elective banks of

  • MTM30511 Certificate III in Meat Processing (Slaughtering) and
  • MTM30611 Certificate III in Meat Processing (General).

The following units have been recoded and titles updated to reflect current industry nomenclature:

  • MTMP3001D – Stun Animal
  • MTMP3039D – Eviscerate wild game field shot carcase
  • MTMP411B – Inspect wild game meat.

Thank you to Trevor Lange, the Curriculum Maintenance Manager (pictured), and Philip Davey for their work on these two Guides. Please forward this to any relevant colleagues/trainers/employers.

trevor lange May 2011


AgriFood 2012 National Conference registrations are now open

Monday, July 23rd, 2012

agrifood logo

Hosted by AgriFood Skills Australia, this year’s conference will be on held on Thursday 20 September 2012 at the Four Points by Sheraton in Sydney. The conference dinner will be held the preceding evening Wednesday 19 September at the conference venue.

Themed Disruption or evolution the program will feature high-profile speakers and panellists discussing industry issues around structural change currently taking place in the agrifood industry.

Key note speakers and panellists include The Hon Tim Fischer AC, Barry Irvin, CEO Bega Cheese Ltd, and Phillip Adams. Additional speakers will be confirmed in the near future. Additions to the conference program will be published here.

Registrations
Registrations are now open through a secure online site, where payment can be made securely by credit card. Click here to register.

tim fischer Conference registrations will close 5:00 PM Friday 14 September 2012.
philip adams


Give your feedback to National Food Plan

Wednesday, July 18th, 2012

From the Australian Food News website, 17 July,

The Australian Government today released its National Food Plan green paper.  The aim is to develop Australia’s first national food plan to integrate all aspects of Government food policy and communication of its strategic direction.

Australia’s Agriculture Minister Senator Joe Ludwig said he expected to receive feedback from around Australia including groups such as farmers, consumers and supermarket groups.  “It’s quite diverse and that’s why I wanted to bring together the food plan into a green paper to have that conversation,” he said.

The green paper acknowledges the relationship between supermarkets and suppliers raises concerns for stakeholders.  “Supermarkets are where most Australians buy their food and we need to ensure a fair trading environment for suppliers while keeping prices low for families,” Senator Ludwig said.

See whole article here and link to Paper and Feedback information.


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