Digital technology and innovation the key to greater profits for regional food producers

Digital technology and agricultural innovation have presented regional food producers with an unprecedented opportunity to reach new customers and retain a bigger share of the profits of their labour.

A new program that brings together specialists from research, education and agricultural institutes including CSIRO, Southern Cross University, ANU, the University of Canberra and IP Australia will guide small to medium-sized agricultural businesses through how they can embrace these developments to build business resilience following some of the most challenging times in history for regional farmers, fishers and growers.

The Market Diversification Program run by the Agribusiness Regional Development Association (ARDA) will deliver six education modules exploring viable market diversification opportunities, from eCommerce and innovative marketing techniques to increasingly popular operational models such as Community Supported Agriculture. The program, which begins on Monday, November 8, is available free of charge to food and beverage producers across southern NSW and the ACT. 

“The good news is that digital innovation has given even the smallest farming businesses a very real  opportunity to sell their products to a much wider market – both domestically and internationally – and new business models are cutting costs, breaking down barriers and letting producers get much closer to customers, giving them the potential to share in a bigger portion of the retail price,” says ARDA Secretary Daryl Young.

The education sessions will include insights from digital and agricultural innovators and logistics experts, and explore the challenges of moving product from farmgate to buyer, protecting intellectual property, and using digital communications to build brand recognition.

“We’ll also introduce some of the people who are changing the face of Australian agriculture marketing by introducing innovation in their businesses and working collaboratively to build supply and awareness,” Mr Young said.

Mr Young said the program aims to help facilitate the development of geographical and industry cohorts so regional agribusinesses can share costs and knowledge, work collectively to enter new markets, coordinate sustained supply and, ultimately, create a strong regional brand.

“We hear frequently from our members, who are often family run businesses, that they don’t have the time or resources to look into how they can diversify their operations and find new customers,” Mr Young said. “We understand these very real challenges, which is why we’re bringing the information and support direct to them through our Market Diversification Program.

“I encourage anybody looking to secure the long-term future of their business to reserve their place for the free webinar education sessions, which begin next Monday (November 8).”

Register now:


Media contact

Michelle Rowe


M: 0400 003 852



About ARDA

The Agribusiness Regional Development Association (ARDA) is a not-for-profit organisation helping Australian producers build strong and sustainable businesses. The Market Diversification Program is delivered through ARDA’s Capital Region Export Alliance Cohort Program, which is funded by the Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment’s Package Assisting Small Exporters (PASE) grant program. 


Individual session registration links:

ARDA Market Diversification Program: Session 1 – Innovators and Champions

5pm, Monday November 8 


ARDA Market Diversification Program: Session 2 – Selling versus marketing

3pm, Tuesday November 9  


ARDA Market Diversification Program: Session 3 – Brand awareness

12pm, Friday November 12 


ARDA Market Diversification Program: Session 4 – Market diversification

2pm, Monday November 15


ARDA Market Diversification Program: Session 5 – Regional logistics

2pm, Tuesday November 16


ARDA Market Diversification Program: Session 6 – Building a cohort

12pm, Friday November 19


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