FoodTech Qld: Top Takeaways in 2022

Aug 30, 2022 by Mark Dingley

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With expo season well and truly here, we thought we’d take a look back to FoodTech Qld last month.

In July, Matthews Australasia was among more than 100 of Australia's top manufacturers to take part in this event. Hosted only once every three years, FoodTech Qld is the best place to uncover insights, trends and technology for your food-manufacturing business.

In 2022, the event was reimagined to include a two-day conference program alongside the show floor on the Gold Coast. Sustainability, alternative proteins, technology and resilience were amongst the topics discussed by industry leaders.

Whether you missed the event or want to relive the best bits, we thought we’d take the opportunity to reflect on this year’s event.

Below are the top insights and takeaways from our team.

Local Suppliers

Two of the Matthews team at FoodTech Qld 2022: David Alexander (left) and Joe Simionato.


Local supply, local support

In the past two years, the Australian food and associated industries have had to adapt to international supply chain issues – and while things are slowly getting easier, the challenges are by no means gone. According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), over a third of all businesses (37%) experienced supply-chain disruptions in February 2022.

Seizing the opportunity, local suppliers of processing and packaging equipment and supplies have grown to fill this space. Locally derived solutions are now much more common compared with overseas suppliers, and it was brilliant to see their latest innovations at FoodTech.

Local Suppliers


A proudly Australian-owned business, here at Matthews Australasia we have not only continued to grow our range of coding and labelling solutions – we have also evolved our support models to meet changing customer needs during the pandemic. For example, we have designed a range of remote support solutions, including our Industrial Augmented Reality wearables solution and Printernet, so that we now give our customers 24x7 support, in-person and remotely.

Automate to drive growth

No doubt about it, automation has become the essential ingredient for manufacturers who want to grow production volumes to meet increased demand, without compromising on quality.

As if that wasn't already a strong business case, the role of automation has become even more critical in the fallout of COVID-19. Automation has proven to make it easier for manufacturers to keep their workers socially distanced on the factory floor, and pivot to manufacture new products to meet changing consumer needs.

At the top of the automation wish list are data collection and analysis. These empower manufacturers to improve business processes, find operational efficiencies and improve quality assurance – all of which are essential if manufacturers want to remain competitive.

That’s why at FoodTech, we demonstrated how manufacturers can use Matthews iDSnet software to capture data and display it on live dashboards, giving operators and managers the information they need to make faster and better business decisions, such as pin-pointing stoppages and bottlenecks, reducing waste and improving Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE).

Our team also demonstrated a range of coding and labelling solutions to help businesses meet customer requirements and regulations, and to help them ensure their production lines remain efficient and keep moving.

We need to talk about sustainability

Sustainability is on everybody’s minds. Australia produces 7.3 million tonnes of food waste across the supply and consumption chain and the Federal Government National Food Waste Strategy aims to halve food waste that goes to landfill by 2030.

No surprises, then, that one of the top challenges discussed at FoodTech Qld was how manufacturers can find alternatives to food packaging and production that are more environmentally friendly and sustainable and will minimise food waste and losses.

We saw cardboard punnets instead of plastic, as well as the award-winning 100% recyclable cardboard corrugated dunnage solution by Opal and JBS Australia, which replaces non-recyclable Expanded Polystyrene (EPS) dunnage typically used in meat export packaging.

Looking for more sustainable inspiration? Take a look at these companies taking biodegradable packaging to a new level.

Local Suppliers

Credit: Credit: iStock / Ivan Bajic

The future of food is… cellular?

As global demand for protein grows, our sources of animal protein must diversify to keep up and Australia has an opportunity to capitalise on this international opportunity. Plant-based proteins, precision fermentation and cellular agriculture could transform the way we produce meat.

Cellular agriculture is dedicated to producing meat, eggs and dairy directly from animals’ cells, rather than whole animals. The argument for cellular agriculture is that it can reduce the impact of food production on our environment, health and animal welfare, while meeting growing consumer demands for sustainable proteins.

Another one of the frontrunners for additional sources of protein is Precision Fermentation, a relatively new field of biotechnology in Australia. Precision Fermentation involves using synthetic biology techniques to engineer single-celled organisms to produce proteins that can be made into food products and can be used to complement traditional agricultural production.

Local Suppliers

Credit: CSIRO


That’s a wrap!

A big thank you to everyone who visited us at FoodTech Qld, and to our customers and partners for their continued support. Tell us, what was your top takeaway from the event? Missed us at FoodTech? Want to talk about our solutions? Contact our team – we’d love to hear from you.