Victoria's agriculture and food industries
Victoria is Australia's largest producer of food and fibre products, and these make up over half of Victoria's total product exports. The state represents 26 per cent of total Australian food and fibre export value.
Victoria's food and fibre exports increased by $0.3 billion to reach a record $14.5 billion for the 2019–2020 period, comprising:
- $11.4 billion of food exports
- $3.1 billion of fibre exports.
In the year to November 2020 the agriculture and processed food industries directly support 197,000 jobs, many of which are in regional Victoria.
- 81,700 in agricultural production
- 108,100 in food and fibre manufacturing.
There are 900 people employed in forestry, 600 in fishing, and 5,800 in agriculture, forestry and fishing support services.
The major commodities produced in Victoria (by gross value in 2018–2019) are:
|Commodity||Gross value ($ billion)|
|Fruit and nuts||1.864|
Dairy farms are the most common type of farm in Victoria. Most farms produce more than one commodity, especially among sheep, cropping and beef farms.
- Dairy farms – 23 per cent
- Cropping farms – 20 per cent
- Beef farms – 19 per cent
- Sheep farms – 19 per cent
- Horticulture farms – 11 per cent
- Other farms – 8 per cent (includes horses and poultry).
Victoria's top earning agricultural exports are:
- meat – $4.7 billion
- animal fibre – $1.4 billion
- dairy – $2.1 billion
- grains – $1.1 billion
- horticulture – $1.6 billion
- wine – $380 million
- prepared foods – $1.3 billion.
China, USA, Japan, New Zealand and Indonesia were the most valuable markets for Victorian food and fibre exports in 2019 –2020, accounting for 61 per cent of Victoria’s food and fibre exports.
The following factsheet covers key aspects of Victorian agriculture: its contribution to the broader economy, exports, land and water use, production trends and productivity.
- Food and Fibre Economic factsheet (PDF - 623.7 KB)
- Food and Fibre Economic factsheet (WORD - 81.1 KB)
Victoria is a highly productive region, generating 23 per cent of Australia's agricultural output and 30 per cent of its food processing by value. Victoria's climatic diversity means it can produce a wide range of agricultural products, while its compact size and quality infrastructure make it easy to transport agricultural produce to food processing facilities, domestic markets and export facilities.
Find out more:
Overview of major industries
Victoria has a moderate yet diverse climate and is able to produce a highly diverse range of agricultural commodities within a compact area.
Victoria is Australia’s major dairy producing and exporting state, accounting for 62 per cent of Australian milk production.
Beef and sheep
Victoria produces more than 40% of Australian lamb, and its beef industry is the most export-oriented of any Australian region.
Chicken meat, eggs and pork products from Victoria have strong demand throughout Australia.
- Other livestock in Victoria report (PDF - 1.2 MB)
- Other livestock in Victoria report (WORD - 48.2 KB)
Victoria’s extensive grain regions have the soils and climate to produce premium quality cereals, pulses, legumes and oilseeds on a large scale.
Victoria’s diverse climate and soils are major assets for horticulture producers. They mean longer growing seasons and a wide range of horticulture products.
Victoria is Australia’s major food processor state, accounting for one third of the processed food produced by Australia.
- Food processing in Victoria report (PDF - 1001.4 KB)
- Food processing in Victoria report (WORD - 50.1 KB)
Regional Victoria is divided into nine regions. Find out more about the agricultural products produced in each region.
Livestock industries such as dairy, beef and poultry account for nearly 80 per cent of Barwon’s total value of agricultural production and reflect the region’s inherent factors of advantage.
Central Highlands is uniquely populated with small, niche farms that provide paddock-to-plate meals, creating an ideal opportunity for agritourism growth.
- Agriculture and food in Central Highlands (PDF - 1.0 MB)
- Agriculture and food in Central Highlands (WORD - 46.0 KB)
Gippsland farms produce over $2.0 billion in agricultural output each year primarily in beef, dairy and vegetable products.
- Agriculture and food in Gippsland (PDF - 788.7 KB)
- Agriculture and food in Gippsland (WORD - 47.2 KB)
This region has a long history in food processing, especially dairy and fruit processing with companies such as SPC Ardmona, Unilever and Freedom Foods choosing to process in the region.
Great South Coast
This region is highly suited to livestock production with productive pastures, fertile soils, access to supplementary feed such as grains and hay, and a relatively high and reliable rainfall.
- Agriculture and food in Great South Coast (PDF - 981.1 KB)
- Agriculture and food in Great South Coast (WORD - 47.9 KB)
This region has a diverse landscape that is suitable for many agricultural enterprises and products. It is especially well known for gourmet food and wine offerings.
- Agriculture and food in Loddon Campaspe (PDF - 1.2 MB)
- Agriculture and food in Loddon Campaspe (WORD - 47.3 KB)
This region is strategically located along important intrastate and interstate transport routes, through the major regional city of Mildura.
Beef, dairy and sheep meat account for nearly 73 per cent of Ovens Murray’s total value of agricultural production reflecting this region’s availability of good rainfall, water, pastures and fodder.
- Agriculture and food in Ovens Murray (PDF - 1.3 MB)
- Agriculture and food in Ovens Murray (WORD - 48.8 KB)
Wimmera Southern Mallee
Agriculture plays a prominent role in the regional economy, with grains, sheep meat and wool the main commodities.
- Agriculture and food in Wimmera Southern Mallee (PDF - 1.1 MB)
- Agriculture and food in Wimmera Southern Mallee (WORD - 47.7 KB)
Invest in Victorian agriculture and food processing
Discover more about the excellent investment opportunities available across Victoria’s agriculture and food processing sectors. Explore the competitive advantages of Victoria’s diverse regions
Victorian agriculture interactive map
This interactive map provides access to a wide range of agricultural data including processing and production information for the different industry sectors as well as environmental and infrastructure data.
Discover more about the excellent investment opportunities available across Victoria’s agriculture and food processing sectors.Invest in Victorian Agriculture