This project has been developed following the discovery of a number of issues in the direct supply of the product to the China market during the progress of current project 2009/723. These, if not addressed, pose a risk to the sustainable success of this market development initiative. However, the scope to fix these problems is outside the scope of the current project.
The specific issues that need addressing are:
1. The current wild caught abalone product being supplied to the trial restaurants of the program is not always presented to support the premium positioning. There appear to be issues with current processes and packaging that affect the product quality that have been seen by the project team during market reviews in China. Inconsistency in product quality heightens regulatory and customer scrutiny of quality and safety parameters.
- The project will provide technical expertise and experimental support to assist current suppliers in optimising raw materials, labour, equipment and packaging and to develop a quality criteria system to supply product that meets the premium positioning in the current project.
2. There is currently a low level of engagement between the importers and the end user and consumer (restaurants and their customers). As the current project builds customer relationships, we have the opportunity to work closely with them to:
- supply the technical requirements to ensure that authentic, safe quality products (current and new) are available through the direct supply channel to China.
- develop new products variants based on direct end user feedback on what are required for the market. Development of new products and a market for them will help remove the price volatility and supply issues associated with a mainly live market and overcome one of the barriers to having Australian wild caught abalone on premium restaurant menus.