Quality Assurance "Down Under": Market Access and Product Differentiation

John D. Lawrence
April 2002  [02-MBP 1]

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Suggested citation:

Lawrence, J.D. 2002. "Quality Assurance "Down Under": Market Access and Product Differentiation." MATRIC briefing paper 02-MBP 1. Center for Agricultural and Rural Development, Iowa State University.


Australia and New Zealand are major beef producing countries and major beef exporters. Unlike the case in the United States, where less than 10 percent of beef is exported, approximately 60 percent of Australia's and 85 percent of New Zealand's beef production is exported. Because of their dependency on a diverse set of export customers, these two countries are developing quality assurance programs that differentiate their beef in the global market and assure individual customers that the product is safe and meets customer needs. The Australian government and beef industry have invested in innovative identification, grading, and quality assurance systems that can be used by processors, producers, and supply chains. New Zealand relies upon individual processors to develop and implement quality assurance programs with their producers and suppliers. Using these innovations, supply chains have been able to distance themselves from the commodity market.

Keywords: beef, quality assurance, traceability, value-added.