The Australian Agricultural Traceability Alliance is a coalition of partners, who have an invested interest in national agricultural traceability and to accelerate Australia’s journey in exceeding $100 billion of farmgate output by 2030 and beyond.
The Alliance aims to ensure strong industry and cross-jurisdictional engagement and provide the right foundations for traceability initiatives to be successful.
They will also translate policy into practice across the entire agricultural supply chain.
National Agricultural Traceability Strategy
The draft National Agricultural Traceability Strategy is being crafted to include feedback received from the National Traceability Summit, the Australian Agricultural Traceability Alliance Forum, and the recent Have Your Say consultation (October – November 2022).
The proposed 10-year National Agricultural Traceability Strategy includes a vision, mission, objectives and identified priority areas for action to support a coordinated approach. It will ultimately help us support an enduring approach to national agricultural traceability.
The draft strategy is expected to be released by mid-2023 following an endorsement process.
Check out the draft strategy and its progress via our Have Your Say website.
Australian Agricultural Traceability Alliance Forum
The Alliance joined together again on 19 October 2022 to finalise the first 10-year National Agricultural Traceability Strategy. The Forum also heard about insights to inform the development of the strategy’s first 5-year implementation plan.
The Forum, held over 1 day with more than 240 Alliance members in attendance (final figures), involved keynote speakers and a panelist discussion in the morning, allowing for the afternoon to focus on interactive deep dive sessions into the 4 pressing challenges (data, regulation, value creation and distribution, and enduring partnerships and continuous improvement) we face in uplifting our national agricultural traceability systems.
The agenda included:
- A pre-recorded introduction from Andrew Metcalfe AO, Secretary, Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry (DAFF).
- An update on what has happened since the April 2022 Summit by Nicola Hinder PSM, Acting Deputy Secretary, Agricultural Trade Group, DAFF.
- Commentary on agricultural traceability in action including:
- Industry developments and context from Noelene de Villiers, Head of Industry Solutions, Woolworths Group.
- Work to digitise cross-border trade processes, with improved data sharing and harmonisation from Julia Wells, Head of Digital, Data and Design, Simplified Trade System Implementation Taskforce.
- A moderated panel discussion specifically illustrating the 4 pressing challenges that we know the national agricultural traceability strategy must address:
- Jasveer Singh, Director, Data, Insights and Trust, DAFF
- Rose Elphick-Darling, Research Fellow, Centre for Supply Chain and Logistics, Deakin University
- Dr Shane Hetherington, Director, Plant Market Access, NSW Department of Primary Industries
- Arnold Jorge, Chief Executive Officer, Export Council of Australia.
- Deep dive workshops with facilitated discussion focussing on, and exploring, the 4 pressing challenges addressed in the draft strategy and the 18 priority areas for action to address these challenges.
Australian Agricultural Traceability Hub
The department is developing a centralised mechanism for industry groups, research bodies, state and territory governments and other organisations to collaboratively develop and drive successful agricultural traceability initiatives.
The Hub will support the coalition of stakeholders to be connected and to stay aligned with each other.
It will help dissolve barriers, so all parties can share in the building, the operating, and the outcomes of an interoperable world-class traceability ecosystem along all supply chains.
In April 2022, we held the first National Traceability Summit, extending the 2021 discussion about the future of Australia’s agriculture traceability.
The National Traceability Summit will be an engagement opportunity of many to ensure all partners’ voices are heard and turned into traceability action.
The inaugural National Traceability Summit was held over 4 half-days on 7-8 and 11–12 April 2022.
Producers, exporters, researchers, government, and industry took stock of the agricultural traceability work already underway and considered the priorities for the pathway forward to becoming a world-class leader in traceability.
The interactive webinar Summit, moderated by ABC Landline’s anchor, Pip Courtney, launched on 7 April 2022. It featured keynote speakers from industry and government from all stages of the agricultural trade supply chain.
The agenda and workshops included:
- An introduction by David Hazlehurst, Deputy Secretary, Agricultural Trade Group.
- A panel and moderated Q&A on how we can turn the conversation on traceability into action, working together and leveraging off industry ideas and experiences:
- Matt Kealley, Senior Membership Engagement and Innovation, CANEGROWERS
- Matt Koval, First Assistant Secretary, Trade Reform Division.
- Su McCluskey, Special Representative for Australian Agriculture and Director, LiveCorp
- Ash Salardini, Chief Economist and General Manager Trade, National Farmers’ Federation
- Linda Venables, Chief Supply Chain Officer, PwC.
- A video address by George Mina, Australian Ambassador to the World Trade Organisation.
- An interview with Marybeth Hayes, Former Executive Vice President, Walmart.
- Commentary on agricultural traceability in action from a range of stakeholders, including:
- Ram Akella, Head of Business Solutions, Woolworths
- John Langbridge, Manager Corporate and Industry Affairs, Australian Meat Industry Council
- Dianne Tipping, Chair, Export Council of Australia.
Summit workshop outputs
Participants at the April 2022 National Traceability Summit focussed on 3 pressing challenges including:
- Value creation and distribution
Key agricultural traceability focus areas
Consumers want to know more about the food they eat and how it’s produced.
We have an opportunity to increase trust and transparency by redesigning how data are collected across the supply chain.
The demand for improved traceability, and the opportunity it creates, is challenging long-held government and industry arrangements for data and information sharing.
It is critical that industry and governments increase collaboration and sharing of traceability information to enable a whole-of-government ‘tell us once’ approach.
Effective and efficient management of data across supply chains is key to delivering wider benefits.
Our farmers and industries will save time and money from information sharing. It will ensure modernised farm management practices are supported alongside the realisation of significant deregulatory benefits.
By creating a transparent traceability ecosystem, we can showcase the premium value of our products to countries we want to do business with.
By demonstrating provenance and credentials like sustainability and organics, we can unlock between $400 million and $1 billion of projected additional value across industries.
There is an increasing importance being placed on provenance and credentials from consumers, who are willing to pay for traceability.
For example, research indicates certified ‘grass-fed beef’ could gain an additional $1 per kilogram in the US market.
Improving our traceability systems will ensure those premium prices in our export markets can be distributed back through the supply chain all the way to the farmgate.
Improved traceability can also unlock other benefits. If we synchronise our traceability frameworks and regulatory technology, we can streamline administration and paper processes. In combination, this can lead to a projected saving of $225 to $350 million per year for businesses.
Through these savings and traceability systems, businesses can also better invest in business growth domestically, and in turn increase their international exports reach.
By streamlining traceability regulations, we have the potential to deliver an industry-wide economic projected benefit of $108 million to $197 million a year.
This can be achieved through greater alignment, reduced duplication, and more efficient compliance mechanisms.
In agricultural production trade, we must navigate and meet multiple regulatory and compliance obligations whether they are retail, consumers, importing markets or government regulation.
Time and costs could be saved through better alignment of needs and improved information sharing, as well as flexible documentation and audit requirements.
We know having a set of consistent and easy to comply with traceability obligations between commercial operators will give producers the confidence to invest in their own systems.
By helping producers to generate, capture and transmit robust and easily transferable traceability information, exporters and regulators can meet a broader range of importing countries requirements and pivot quickly in response to trade restrictions.
This pressing challenge is fundamental in supporting the other 3 pressing challenges. Ownership of improvements is created through enduring and motivated partnerships across the whole agricultural traceability ecosystem.
Agricultural Traceability Alliance
Watch the Traceability Voices of Industry 2021 video to hear industry’s views on what national traceability could look like and the challenges currently faced by the agriculture industry.