Food is the backbone of the South Australian economy – our workforce, economy, regions, health, environment, communities and every individual all depend on a healthy food industry.

The South Australian food industry is a significant contributor to the state, currently contributing some $16.4 billion in revenue and around 35% of total merchandise exports. One in five workers in South Australia is employed in the food and wine sector. It’s a growing industry, adding value steadily to South Australia’s domestic and export income.

And, despite the challenges of weather, a challenging domestic retail enviroment and a strong Australian dollar, it’s a growing industry, adding value steadily to South Australia’s domestic and export income.

The majority of South Australian food manufacturers and producers are small to medium enterprises, often owner-operated and family owned. Amongst these are many now managed by the successive generations of the establishing family, such as Thomas Foods International, Coopers Brewery, Haigh’s Chocolates, Robern Menz, Barossa Fine Foods, Spring Gully Foods and Beerenberg.

South Australia produces food of exceptional quality, appreciated across Australia and around the world. We are well-regarded for fresh produce such as meat, seafood and a wide range of horticultural crops including citrus, grains and almonds. This reputation is built on the quality of products grown in the clean and green environment of our land and oceans, backed by monitored legislation and policy along the entire value chain from the point of production to end consumption.

The state also boasts a thriving food and wine tourism industry, attracting many visitors from overseas to sample the best and freshest produce right on the grower’s doorstep at cafes, cellar doors, restaurants and farmers’ markets.

Did you know?

  • The value of finished food products (processed foods) grew 13% through 2014-2015, delivering a record value of $6.6 billion, while total overseas exports increased by 9% over the year to reach $4 billion. Interstate sales also continued to increase by 20% to $2.6 billion.
  • The food sector workforce includes areas such as food service, primary production, retail and manufacturing – with processed food products underpinning the strength of the industry as they are higher in value and have a more stable growth pattern.
  • • The food industry in South Australia is represented by Food South Australia Inc., an industry led and membership based organisation dedicated to growing value and opportunities for the South Australian food industry by assisting food businesses to improve their capacity, connect with markets, and expert connections.

All statistics current SA Food ScoreCard report 2014/15.

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