South-west food and agriculture start-up businesses needing guidance in the early stages of development are invited to take part in a Melbourne-based accelerator program.
Established in 2017, Rocket Seeder supports innovators and founders to take their ideas to the next level.
For the first time, managing director Emma Coath is excited to bring the program to the south-west.
"We know there are really innovative people in regional Victoria," she said.
"The program supports entrepreneurs to develop their mindset, show them a clear pathway for their business and to look at development outside of their region, Victoria and Australia.
"Participants can test their products and ideas in the market and we give them particular techniques to do so.
"We cover public relations and how it differs from marketing and some accounting and legal understanding but the program's main focus is on innovation.
"Most importantly, our alumni and mentor network means participants have people to call on post-program."
Garlic farmer and gourmet producer Carmel Masterson's Springmount Fine Foods partook in the program in 2018 and won a Business Excellence Award in 2019.
"As a fairly new business the information we learnt was so valuable," she said.
"We we able to identity our customer segment and what was the best ways to pursue business with them.
"The program gave us the tools to go out and speak to our customers.
"Once we were able to launch our product we knew we were on the right track."
Rocket Seeder will begin at The Hive at South West TAFE, Warrnambool on Monday, February 17 with applications closing this Friday, February 14. Ideally businesses less than three years old with an innovative product or service from across the food and/or agriculture value chain should apply. To apply, contact Emma Coath through the Rocket Seeder website.
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