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WA consumers hear the call to buy local

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More than two thirds of Western Australians are hearing the ‘buy local’ message and increasingly supporting the State’s important agriculture, food and drink industries.

The Buy West Eat Best labelling program has championed the benefits of buying local since 2008. 

The program is unique Western Australia, enabling consumers to confidently identify ingredients and grocery products that are grown, farmed, fished, processed and prepared right here in WA. 

Independent consumer research conduced in April 2021 showed almost eight out of 10 shoppers (79 percent) are now familiar with the BWEB brand, an increase of 13 percent since 2017. 

Of this, more than 90 per cent of respondents believed Buy West Eat Best was important to the WA economy and to local farmers, producers, agri-food businesses and communities. 

Department Food Industry Development Manager Deborah Pett said it was fantastic to see so many West Australians recognising the benefits of buying local, seasonally fresh produce and supporting our important food and beverage industries and businesses. 

“Interestingly, the consumer research showed nearly half of all West Australians are buying more local produce following the challenges presented over the past year, and a third are cooking more at home,” Ms Pett said. 

‘We have seen similar trends overseas, and it is important that we support local businesses to optimise these opportunities, through programs such as Buy West Eat Best.” 

More than 75 percent of grocery shoppers also said they were aware of the Good Choice, WA media and marketing campaign, which was first run in 2017 to encourage consumers to think local, buy local and dine locally. 

“The campaign provides a platform to celebrate the fresh, seasonal world-class food being produced across Western Australia,” Ms. Pett said. 

“This is particularly important as consumers are placing increased importance on knowing where their food is originating from. 

“Good Choice, WA is helping to get people thinking again about buying local to support our farmers, food and beverage producers, and processors as part of the recovery from COVID-19 impacts.” 

Milne AgriGroup Head of Marketing Nikki Atack said as a WA family owned-and-operated business, Milne considers Buy West Eat Best to be an important industry partner for their local free-range meat brands, Mt Barker Chicken and Plantagenet Pork. 

“The Good choice, WA campaign has been extremely effective in highlighting the importance of local provenance and supporting WA producers,” Ms Atack said. 

“Buy West Eat Best continues to have a positive impact on our business and brand salience, providing a trusted platform to communicate our core values and ethical farming philosophy. Particularly in this COVID era, WA’s farming community needs more support than ever.” 

Sweeter Banana Co-operative Business Manager Doriana Mangili echoed the need for business to continue to support the campaign. 

“The strong brand awareness of the distinctive bite mark logo is essential to maintain. For many grocery shoppers, it is a simple yet highly effective cue to support our local producers,” she said. 

“All rural and regional communities, including us here in the Gascoyne region, benefit by supporting Buy West Eat Best and there is recognition and greater understanding of the critical need to support WA’s food and beverage sector which is more important now than ever.” 

The WA Stonefruit Industry, first time partners in the campaign, found it invaluable to be involved to promote the fantastic stone fruit produced across the State. 

“The work done through the Buy West Eat Best program provides terrific support to Western Australia’s food and beverage industries, particularly through the successful Good Choice, WA campaign,” Stonefruit SubCommitte Chairman Danny Di Marco said. 

“Being a partner in the Good Choice, WA campaign has added value to our industry-driven marketing program, with invitations to participate in a range of media activities and strengthen our retailer relationships.”