Agri-tourism company Off the Table launched in Tasmania this week capitalising on a consumer trend in farmgate retail.
Led by former food curator for Taste of Tasmania, Anna Yip, the startup has launched with five flagship food experiences, featuring prominent brands Tasmanian Truffles, Pure Foods Eggs, Tasman Sea Salt, Tasmanian Natural Garlic and Tomatoes (TNGT) and Lentara Grove.
Working with farmers and producers all around the island, the agtech startup aims to promote local food brands by connecting consumers directly to the farm.
Customers are now able to see, touch and taste a side of farming that is not usually available to the public. Agri-tourism is growing on the mainland as well, enabling supplementary revenue streams for producers, both regional and remote.
Tourism data suggests consumers are increasingly curious about rural experiences. In the space of five years, the number of domestic tourists to Australia who visited a farm on their trip increased by 9 per cent on average, and 11pc for international tourists, Deloitte reported.
Traditionally thought of as being simply family farm stays and wineries, the term agri-tourism now encompasses a range of activities and retail such as pick-your-own, paddock-to-plate dining, and farm gate stores.
A successful agri-tourism strategy typically differs by industry type and location however most leverage a clustering effect of complimentary regional attractions.
Geographically remote businesses may benefit by offering longer farm stays, experiential tours, or online retail. While farms closer to city centres are able to capitalise on proximity.
The agtech startup aims to promote local food brands by connecting consumers directly to the source on private farms
The increasing interest in food provenance has also driven Victorian startup, Provenir. The mobile abattoir and consumer brand market their hyper-local grass-fed beef from “paddock to processor to plate.”
At Sydney’s Agtech Summit held this week, CEO Chris Balazs announced the commissioning of the company’s first mobile slaughtering unit is in final stages.
This will be Australia’s first fully certified mobile abattoir, with product anticipated to be commercially available in Victoria by mid-year.