The DAFF says it will expand its network of agricultural counsellors.

Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry (DAFF) Deputy Secretary for Agricultural Trade and Regulation Tina Hutchison says the agency will replenish nine counsellor positions in the upcoming year. 

“Our counsellors are instrumental in maintaining Australia’s multi-billion-dollar agricultural exports and are key to helping the sector meet the $100 billion farm gate production target by 2030,” Ms Hutchison stated.

For over 25 years, these counsellors have played a critical role in securing and sustaining market access, supporting trade agreement negotiations, and establishing market entry provisions for Australian agricultural products. 

The network currently includes 19 officers stationed in key locations such as Brussels, Bangkok, Beijing, Santiago, New Delhi, Jakarta, Rome, Tokyo, Mexico City, Seoul, Riyadh, Dubai, Washington DC, and Hanoi. The agricultural counsellors also resolve specific import and export issues. 

In the 2022–23 fiscal year, Australia's agricultural, fisheries, and forestry exports reached a record $80 billion. 

Grains, oilseeds, and pulses emerged as the fastest-growing segment, increasing by 11 per cent annually in real value terms since 2003–04.

The upcoming replenishments will fill current vacancies in Japan, Malaysia, and the United Kingdom, alongside replacing six counsellors whose deployments are concluding. 

The standard tenure for these postings is three to four years.

Each counsellor location includes from locally engaged staff, who provide essential support through language services, stakeholder engagement, and knowledge of local customs and etiquette.