Mildura – Strengths and Opportunities
A guide to the Mildura Region.
A warm climate, innovative irrigation infrastructure and transport links has helped position Mildura as a ‘powerhouse’ in the food and manufacturing sector.
The region has a $2.765 billion economy which is driven mainly by agriculture and horticulture. Mildura’s manufacturing sector produces value added products from agricultural produce, manufacturing food, wine and beverages. Construction and mining are also significant contributors to the region’s output, as are rental, hiring and real estate services. The region is also seeing interest and growth in the renewable energy sector, mineral sands mining, nut processing and the retail sector, all of which are strengthening and diversifying the region’s economy. Sunraysia is situated on the borders of Victoria, South Australia and New South Wales on the might Murray River. This area is renowned for its high quality fruit and vegetables grown in a pollution free environment. Temperatures in the region average several degrees higher than other Victoria locations, with longer hours of sunshine than the majority of Australian regions. The climate, together with the region’s fertile alluvial soil and access to irrigation water along the river provides an environment that is advantageous for plant growth and has seen our horticultural footprint expand. These climatic conditions are the key to the area’s top quality produce. Olive and almond groves have joined vineyards and orchards to boost our outputs and potential. Such conditions have been found to contribute directly to the high beta-carotene content of many locally grown vegetables such as broccoli and carrots.
Mildura has a well-developed network of roads and efficient refrigerated road transport services. Additionally, a well connected airport, capable of receiving larger planes, offers regular flights to and from capital cities, ensuring produce destined for the S.E. Asian markets can be dispatched promptly. The Port of Melbourne is Autralia’s leading general cargo and container port, and is well equipped to handle fresh produce.Fresh Produce Available for Export.
% of Australia’s produce grown in the Mildura/Swan Hill/Wentworth region is approximately:
98% of dried grapes
75% of table grapes
68% of almonds
48% of pistachios
24% of citrus
24% of carrots
23% of asparagus
11% of melons
20% of Australia’s wine crushed in the Murray Darling and Swan Hill region (2012)
The region is now also a significant player in the olive industry.
The Mildura region leads the country in table grape production, with 75% of the country’s table grapes grown here. The Australian Table Grape Association Inc. (ATGA) is the peak industry body representing commercial table grape growers around the country, and it is based in Mildura. With a broad range of grape varieties grown here, our producers have a reputation for supplying fresh, colourful, crisp and sweet grapes.
Mildura produces approximately 24% of Australia’s citrus. 44% of the citrus grown is exported, 22% is sold as fresh fruit on the domestic market and 34% is processed into fruit juice. The industry has focused on achieving high quality fruit rather than high volume. Our export citrus fruit has an international reputation for excellent flavour and rind colour, good storage life on arrival in overseas markets and very reliable food safety assurance.
Approximately 65% of Australia’s almonds are grown in the Mildura and Swan Hill regions. Australia is currently classified as the fastest growing almond industry in the world and has become the second largest almond producer globally. Australian almond production has grown to achieve record crops of over 82,509 tonnes with corresponding increases in export sales over the past five years exceeding 481% and domestic sales over 46%.