Nutrition powder maker wins agribusiness export title

Nowra's Essence Group wins ag export title in national awards

Jimmy Seervai and Matthew Caldicott from Essence Group.

Jimmy Seervai and Matthew Caldicott from Essence Group.


National awards have recognised the contribution Australian exporters make - specifically the 94 finalists who earnt $7.8 billion in export sales.


NSW maker of infant nutrition products, dietary supplements and listed medicines, the Essence Group, has taken out the food and agribusiness category at this year's 57th Australian Export Awards.

The Essence Group, based in Sydney and with processing and distribution operations on the South Coast at Nowra supplies natural health items such as tablets, capsules, powders and sachets to some of Australia's biggest brands, including A2 Milk Company, Aldi, Blackmores, Swisse and Woolworths.

It also exports to China, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Thailand, the UAE, the UK and the US.

In 2018-19, exports accounted for more than 40 per cent of sales, up 30pc on the previous year.

The company wants to further increase its international footprint with global and local partnerships, collaborations and acquisitions.

Small business winner was Western Australia's Dutjahn Sandalwood Oils, Osborne Park, a 50pc indigenous-owned company supplying Australian sandalwood oil to the global luxury perfume market.

It produces oil from wood sustainably harvested by Indigenous desert communities from their Dutjahn (sandalwood) homelands near Kalgoorlie

Two top international fragrance makers recently agreed to use Dutjahn sandalwood oil in a deal that will generate millions of dollars in revenue.


Ag export finalists shortlisted for awards

Winner of the regional exporter category was Care Essentials from Geelong in Victoria.

Care began as a reusable blanket maker supplying one Victorian hospital but now makes and distributes patient warming systems to hospitals across the world.

Its Cocoon blankets and warming machines prevents patients from hypothermia, infection and speed up recovery from surgical procedures. Revenue is growing at 30pc a year and exports account for 65pc of that revenue.

A total of 13 businesses from around Australia were recognised for outstanding export achievements on Tuesday night in Canberra, including the 2019 Australian Exporter of the Year - Populous - for its success in sport and entertainment venue design.

Iconic venues which owe their unique look to the Brisbane architectural company's imagination include London's Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, the Yankee Stadium in New York, and Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane.

Trade, Tourism and Investment Minister, Simon Birmingham, said populous was now one of the largest architectural firms in the world.

"It is generating around 80 per cent of its income from exports and this year has created 58 new jobs in Australia," he said.

"This is an outstanding story of a company that over two decades through expanding into overseas markets has transformed into a powerhouse within its industry and is a standout example of our growing services sector."

Mr Birmingham said this year's awards recognised an enormous contribution exporters made to Australia with the 94 finalists employing 34,000 Australians generating more than $7.8 billion in export sales.

"This year's award winners are from the city, outback and bush, and span a range of sectors from businesses exporting designer mattresses, essential oils, aerospace parts, animation services and underwear."

Australian animation company, Animal Logic was inducted into the Australian Export Awards Hall of Fame after winning the creative industries category three times.

Founded in 1991, Animal Logic is recognised as one of the world's leading independent creative digital studios, producing award winning design, visual effects and animation.

From creating mischievous bunnies in Peter Rabbit, to teaching prancing penguins how to dance in Happy Feet, Animal Logic has inspired audiences around the world with great stories, breathtaking visuals, compelling characters, memorable performances and ground breaking technology.

The winners list

  • Australian Exporter of the Year and Professional Services Award Winner, Populous - Brisbane
  • Agribusiness, Food and Beverages Award - Essence Group, Greenwich, Sydney and Nowra.
  • Creative Industries Award - Rising Sun Pictures, Adelaide.
  • E-commerce Award - Swisse Wellness, Melbourne.
  • Emerging Exporter Award - Koala, Sydney.
  • International Education and Training Award - The University of Adelaide, Adelaide.
  • International Health Award - Leica Biosystems, Melbourne.
  • Manufacturing and Advanced Materials Award - Marand Precision Engineering, Melbourne.
  • Minerals, Energy and Related Services Award - Microbiogen, Lane Cove, Sydney.
  • Regional Exporter Award - Care Essentials, Geelong North, Victoria.
  • Small Business Award - Dutjahn Sandalwood Oils, Osborne Park, Perth.
  • Sustainability Award - Modibodi, Sydney.
  • Technology and innovation Award - Seeing Machines, Fyshwick, Canberra.
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