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New support program for small-scale producers and craft businesses

The Victorian Government is supporting small-scale and craft businesses across the state, helping producers work together to put their high-quality produce on the tourism map.

Minister for Agriculture Mary-Anne Thomas today visited Fleurs de Lyonville – a chemical-free micro flower farm in the Central Highlands, to officially open stream three of the Small-Scale and Craft Program.

“We are extremely excited to have received this grant. It has allowed us to significantly upgrade our infrastructure and cut flower growing space, a project we would not have been able to undertake without funding,” Fleurs de Lyonville owner Janae Paquin-Bowden.

Fleurs de Lyonville uses regenerative agricultural practices and supplies to consumers via local grocers, florists and wedding packages. Under the program, the business received funding to purchase a polytunnel and hoop houses to increase production and diversify its product line.

Alongside Fleurs de Lyonville, many other small-scale and craft producers across Victoria have received grants through previous streams of the program – including gourmet pie producers, olive growers, sake distillers and alpaca farmers.

Stream Three offers grants of between $25,000 and $100,000 for eligible small-scale and craft agribusinesses. These grants will support projects that showcase multiple producers and support the creation of distinct visitor experiences, creating tourist attractions that put their region on the map.

The Government is helping small agribusinesses grow as a key pillar of its Agriculture Strategy, which will in turn boost visitation to regional towns and create jobs.

The Small-Scale and Craft Program supports the vision for an agriculture sector that is strong, innovative, and sustainable. It is a $10.2 million program over four years that delivers on the Government’s election commitment.

“Victoria’s small-scale and craft sector is central to our agri-tourism appeal and reputation as a producer of high-quality, niche agricultural offerings,” Minister for Agriculture Mary-Anne Thomas.

“From truffles to craft beer, Victoria’s small-scale producers create food and beverage offerings worth discovering.”

“Our small-scale and craft sector is making a name for itself on the global stage and continues to grow as more creative Victorians use their skills and passion to make the world-class produce that our state is known for.”

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