FANmail January 2023

FANmail January 2023

This post is part of our monthly FANMail newsletter for everything Sunshine Coast Food & Agribusiness.

Join for free and stay up to date with the industry!

Dear FAN Community,

And we’re back for what is shaping up to be another busy and FANtastic year for our network, members and community.

This is a bumper edition of FANMail – so grab a cuppa and make sure to ‘view the entire message’ at the bottom of this email – there’s lots of great info on upcoming grants, activity and events.

As a short introduction for those who don’t know me – Nicole McNaughton the Interim CEO taking up the reigns in 2023. I’ve had the pleasure of working with our members for the past 5 years as the Communications and Cluster Manager and 2IC to Emma. 

In 2023 our focus will be on continuing to provide connections, collaboration and capability building for our members and industry. For details on all upcoming events, initiatives and activities make sure your’re signed up to our socials and FAN member FB page.

The team have shaped up a great schedule of upcoming Member Meet Ups, Member Master Classes and Meet the Makers 2023 (details below) and we look forward to reconnecting after the festive break.

Also join us on Monday 6th February for a special update on what to expect from FAN in 2023 – shared by myself and our chair Jacqui Price. RSVP HERE.

We look to forward to connecting soon.


Table of Contents

FAN Events

Are you a Food &/or Beverage Manufacturer? A Primary Producer? Would you love the opportunity to showcase your product to buyers who are passionate about sourcing local?

Join us at Aussie World on Tuesday 2nd May in FAN’s 5th year hosting Meet the Makers.

Get ready for more connections, more buyers, more networking, more FANtastic opportunities to meet our regions MAKERS! Discounted ticket price for Early Bird registrations before 31 January 2023.
BOOK HERE – or contact us for more info

Exhibitor Categories
Artisan pantry I Baked goods I Beans leaves spices I Brews from local crews I Delicious dairy I Farm grown fresh produce I Frozen treats I Meat and Small Goods I Organic goodness I Plant based alternatives I Sauces, jams and condiments I Savoury snacks I Spirit makers I Tasty treats I Wholesome free from

Exhibitor stands are open only to FAN Members. Stand price include tickets to the networking session for participating exhibitors. Full exhibitor details (and bump in times) and details on Information Sessions will be sent after booking.

Interested in exhibiting – please contact us [email protected].au

Join us for the Networking Session at MTM23 – 5.30pm – 7.30pm
Not exhibiting? Don’t worry, you won’t miss out! Join us for the Networking Session of MTM23 where you get a chance to meet our FANtabulous MAKERS. FAN members and partners, industry supporters, media and passionate foodies are invited to attend this session to support our amazing makers. Maybe also bring a bag… or a beach cart (we know how tempting everything is!)

Out & About

During January, FAN Members Maleny DairiesWalker Seafoods & Piggy in the Middle welcomed Australian Chef Guy Grossi and the team from The Westin Brisbane to visit their farms and facilities and taste and learn about the provenance of their their products – with introductions made by our own Jacki Hinchey.
Guy and the team will be opening new Italian restaurant ‘Settimo’, located at the Westin Brisbane, in February which has a focus on including local food and beverage products on their menu..

Accounting for Nature & Landcare

We’re delighted to share some insights and learnings on a recent project undertaken in collaboration with Landcare and Accounting for Nature.
In this project, conducted late 2022, our participants learnt valuable and practical ways to measure environmental condition on their properties. This information can be used to inform farm management practices, communicate environmental condition to consumers and stakeholders, and gain a better understanding of the overall health of the environment.

With thanks to AgWe for this stunning video!
Learn more about Accounting for Nature 

FAN Member Annual Survey
Feedback from our members is very important to us, so we can design our activities around what’s important to you. We kindly request 5 minutes of your time to help us finalise our 2023 program. Please see survey here.

FAN Member Badges 2023
Be sure to show your customers and community that you’re a member of the Food & Agribusiness Network by proudly displaying our badge on your website. Please drop an email to Bec on to get your badge in the format you prefer. You can also download your badge from the Online Resource section on FAN Connect – you must be logged in to gain access.

FAN Member Facebook Group
Don’t forget to join our closed FAN Member Facebook Group where current financial members are able to connect, collaborate and share within our FAN Member network. Ask questions, share news and reach out to the network here –

National Agriculture Traceability Grants Program – Sustainability Reporting Uplift Grant Round 
The Australian Government is inviting organisations in an open process to apply to deliver services under the National Agriculture Traceability Grants Program – Sustainability Reporting Uplift Grant Round from June 2023 to June 2025. More info here.

Industry Kickstarter Grant –
Round 2 now open

EOIs for the Industry Kickstarter grant are now open and close on Wednesday 1 February 2023. The grant is offered by UQ Agri-Food Innovation Alliance to help academics and industry conduct co-created and collaborative research that will have a clear pathway of impact within the agrifood sector and provide partnership with impactful research to help with external funding. READ MORE HERE.

Coles Nurture Fund – Round 11 now open
Applications are open for the latest of grants from the Coles Nurture Fund, which is targeted towards producers developing new market-leading products and sustainable processes and technologies.

Entries open for the 2023 Australian Small Business Champion Awards
Entries for the 2023 Australian Small Business Champion Awards close on Wednesday 15th February 2023. Enter your business now, click here. The full category listing can be found here. For tips and hints for your application, click here. For further information on the awards, visit

Queensland Training Awards
Nominations are now open for the 2023 Queensland Training Awards – celebrating excellence in training and the transformative power of skills.
Nominations are now open and
close 15 March 2023.

Member Resources & Opportunities

Industry Workforce Advisor – Kym Wessling

We’d like to introduce our network to Kym, who has been in touch with the FAN team to bring us up to speed on her new role as Industry Workforce Advisor – Agriculture & Horticulture. The aim of the Industry Workforce Advisor program is to provide workforce planning assistance to small to medium employers enabling them to address workforce challenges, diversify their workforces, and support workforce growth. This may include identification of recruitment strategies to expand applicant pools and consider underrepresented groups such as migrants, young people, those who identify as women, First Nation or as having a disability. 

Industry Workforce Advisors will work directly with individual employers to:

  • identify workforce challenges, develop a workforce plan and suggest options to address the challenges including accessing grants and incentives
  • refer small businesses to funding available under the Workforce Connect Fund for new and innovative HR solutions
  • assist employers to develop strategies to recruit and attract people for their workforce, including from diverse cohorts, and other potential labour supply, such as skilled migration
  • connect employers with the department’s programs including grants and initiatives, the Business Queensland website and available Australian Government programs and incentives.
For more information –

Sunshine Coast Jobs Hub
Sunshine Coast Council and Study Sunshine Coast have brought a one-stop-platform for employment in the Sunshine Coast region.  Are you a local business looking for new staff and want to employ local or attract new worker and talent to our region? Job vacancies can be posted on this platform at no cost. More info here.

Are you ready to scale up?
Scaling Up – A smarter way to business growth program is designed to leverage local businesses in their growth and expansion efforts, provide resources and support to help them reach their full potential, and drive performance so they feel in control. Delivered by Groei Education and supported by Sunshine Coast Council to drive business growth on the Sunshine Coast. Places are limited! Click here to find out more and Submit an EOI before 24 February 2023. Program starts 10 March 2023.

AgriStarter Loan
Loans to assist first-time farmers and loans to support farm succession arrangements. For further information, visit

The Australasian Recycling Label for SMEs

The SME ARL Campaign is a new program underway to raise awareness among small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) about the benefits of adopting the Australasian Recycling Label (ARL) on their packaging. The project received grant funding from the Australian Government. To find out more visit ARL Marketplace

evokeAg Discount code and Networking Event (21-22 February 2023 in Adelaide)
As a participating group in the Producer Technology Uptake Program, AgriFutures is providing a special discount code specifically for producers to attend evokeAG.  For more information, please contact [email protected].au

GreenX Talks Sustainability Conference, Wednesday 15 March

Learn from the experts at this major sustainability conference on the Sunshine Coast. In a TEDx style event, hear from 12 key experts in the sustainability industry, relevant to any business or organisation.
More information and registrations:

Walking the Wire – Resource for rural agribusiness women
Walking the Wire is a resource designed to help strengthen the financial security of rural agribusiness women. This e-kit is a simple guide that details questions to ask, issues to be aware of, and where to find further information, education and obtain initial advice. A collaborative project by industry, community and government, Walking the Wire has been written by rural women for rural women. 

We Eat Local 
Long Term FAN Member, Mark Dwyer from We Eat Local, would like to thank Sunshine Coast Council for supporting the We Eat Local app. The We Eat Local App is a follow on from Council’s Shop Local, Buy Local program. The We Eat Local app is free to download from your App Store of choice. The app highlights our Sunshine Coast Council’s food producers, retailers of locally produced food and our farmers markets.

FIAL has released the seventh edition of Celebrating Australian Food and Agribusiness Innovations featuring FAN members Happy Snack Co & The Mini Farm Project. This latest edition showcases businesses striving towards the $200 billion opportunity for the sector, as outlined in FIAL’s Capturing the Prize

Member News

Congratulations to Nick Steiner from The Mini Farm Project who was awarded Citizen of the Year for Moreton Bay. Pictured with Mayor Peter Flannery and last years winner Graham Gibb at this years Moreton Bay Regional Council Citizen of the Year Award.

Congratulations to Petersen’s Farm & Canefields Distillery
Not one, but two FAN members were successful in securing grants in the highly competitive round 2 of the Queensland Agritourism Grants Program!

A very big congratulations to Petersen’s Farm & Canefields Distillery. Read more here.

Congratulations to Your Mates! 
On the cracker opening of their Noosa Bowls Pub located in the heart of Cooroy. Read more here.

At the AGM in November, we said goodbye to David Cohen and welcomed Jeanette Jifkins to the FAN Board. In January, unfortunately Brent Deller resigned from the FAN Board due to work commitments. We thank our (volunteer) Board, past and present, for their valuable input, time and support of FAN.

Not had the chance to meet our Board – here’s a short intro…

Jacqui Price
FAN Chair
Jacqui is a passionate marketer with extensive experience in marketing, brand strategy, and new product commercialisation in the food, agribusiness and beverage industries. Jacqui is currently the Marketing Manager for the Australian Macadamia industry, promoting Australian grown macadamias to the world.

Mark Peters
Finance Director
Mark has over 30 years experience in business and has held CEO roles in a number of international companies across a diverse range of industries including manufacturing and engineering.

Mick Hay
FAN Board
After more than 12 years in corporate agribusiness in senior management across sales and the supply chain, Mick recognised the need for a specialist recruiter to answer the unique needs of both agribusiness and supply chain companies and candidates.

Jeanette Jifkins
FAN Board
Jeanette is the Principal Lawyer of Onyx Legal, a boutique corporate and commercial (business law) law firm based in North Lakes. Together with her husband Tony, Jeanette is on a journey of learning to grow their 10 acre property in Moorina into a syntropic farm, with a view to supporting local businesses with farm to plate produce and becoming involved in the Moreton Bay agri-tourism ecosystem.

Megan Brabant
FAN Board
Megan is a passionate FMCG marketer with over 18 years sales and marketing experience in both the B2C and B2C environments. Megan is currently the Consumer Sales & Marketing Director at McCormick Foods Australia, leading consumer portfolio of well known brands including Gourmet Garden, Aeroplane Jelly and McCormick within Australia and New Zealand.

Tracy Henderson
FAN Board
Tracy has over two decades of experience leading and enabling strategic initiatives within Australia’s research and innovation sector.

Our Supporters

Special thanks to FAN’s Partners and Sponsors who provide significant resources towards the ongoing sustainability of FAN and the growth and resilience of our regions’ food and agribusiness industry.

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This post is part of our monthly FANMail newsletter for everything Sunshine Coast Food & Agribusiness.

Join for free and stay up to date with the industry!

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