The announcement of a new five-year contract that will see orders of Australian vegetables and potatoes from supermarket Coles to processor Simplot increase by 12 per cent by volume has been welcomed by the national peak industry body for growers, AUSVEG.

The announcement, made by Coles today, will see the supermarket’s Smart Buy frozen vegetable and potato products sourced from 100 per cent Australian-grown produce by early 2014.

“Coles’ commitment is welcome news for the hundreds of Australian vegetable and potato growers supplying Simplot with quality produce,” said AUSVEG spokesperson, Andrew White.

AUSVEG is the leading horticultural body representing Australia’s 9,000 vegetable and potato growers.

Coles has said that its new offer will increase the total annual volume of produce sourced from Australia to over 19 million kilograms, an increase of around 2.4 million kilograms.

“It is encouraging to see the retail sector working closely with the food processing industry which is important for the viability of Australian vegetable and potato growers.”

“With $908 million of vegetable imports flooding our shores in 2011-12, it is imperative that processing operations like Simplot’s in Australia are kept afloat for the sake of Australia’s food security.”

“AUSVEG welcomes Coles’ initiative to source its Smart Buy frozen product lines exclusively from Australian vegetable and potato growers,” said Mr White.

Recent consumer studies have shown that 80 per cent of Australians would prefer to buy Australian-grown produce and support local growers. Coles’ new contract with Simplot should make it easier for consumers to buy Australian-made. 

“While we welcome this announcement, other retailers should also follow Coles’ lead and ensure that their produce– both frozen and processed – is also sourced only from Australian growers.”


MEDIA CONTACT: Andrew White – Manager of Industry Development and Communications.
Phone: (03) 9882 0277 Mobile: 0409 989 575 E-mail: