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Southern Forests Food Council and hospitality distribution partner getFresh Merchants had the honour last night of presenting The West Australian Good Food Guide Regional Chef Of The Year to Santiago Fernandez at the WA Good Food Guide Awards (WAGFA’s). A well-deserved win in an highly competitive category.

In addition to presenting the award, guests were also able to enjoy seasonal Genuinely Southern Forests produce as part of the menu. The event provided a perfect opportunity to increase the exposure of the region’s produce to a wide network of chefs and caterers.

The WA Good Food Guide is known as the preeminent consumer publication for the hospitality industry written by independent experts. Each year the WA Good Food Guide showcases 50 of Western Australia’s finest restaurants, chefs, sommeliers and restaurant managers at an awards night. Last night’s event was widely heralded as the best ever in its six-year history with Crown Perth playing host to the hospitality industry, stakeholders, suppliers and sponsors.

Southern Forests Food Council partner getFresh Merchants services the hospitality industry in WA with a range of fresh local produce sourced from across the State. The team is known for their in-depth understanding of the importance of produce from both sides of the plate. Produce Specialist Michael Curedale has 18 years’ experience as a professional chef and has a passion for fresh produce.

“It was a fantastic evening at Crown and we would once again like to congratulate Regional Chef of the Year Santiago Fernandez for their incredible win,” said Michael.

“The getFresh team knows how hard it is to consistently serve top quality food, so we aim to make it a bit easier by delivering seasonal, farm fresh produce straight to the kitchen door. And you just can’t beat the quality fruit and vegetables from the Southern Forests region,” Michael said.

Southern Forests Food Council Chair Monica Radomiljac identifies the partnership as a key link in the supply chain for chefs and consumers to access Genuinely Southern Forests produce. “In our opinion our members grow some of the best produce in the world, and partnering with getFresh merchants for the West Australian Good Food Guide Award provides the vital link for our State’s leading chefs, such as Santiago, to access and showcase our region’s amazing food offerings.”

The SFFC is supported by a $1.5 million investment over three years through the State Govern-ment’s Royalties for Regions program to support the Council’s on-going activities in developing economic opportunities for the region. The SFFC is also supported by the Shire of Manjimup, and includes the towns of Manjimup, Pemberton, Northcliffe and Walpole.

Left to right: Michael Curedale of getFresh merchants with Regional Chef of the Year winner Santiago Fernandez and Stephen Kahl of getFresh merchants

More information: Please contact Georgia Thomas on 0431444918 or Website: WA Good Food Guide: getFresh merchants: Facebook: Genuinely Southern Forests Instagram: @genuinelysouthernforests

Southern Forests Food Council: The Southern Forests Food Council was founded in 2010 by a group of passionate local producers who recognised that the wealth and abundance of produce grown in the region made it perfect for major food production and agri-tourism. Its role was formalised in 2012 after receiving a $5 million investment under the State Government’s Royalties for Regions initiative. The investment is part of a $7 million Royalties for Regions allocation to the Shire of Manjimup for its Agricultural Expansion Project. The SFFC received further funding in 2018 of $1.5 million to support the Council’s on-going activities in developing economic opportunities for the region.

The Food Council is committed to unifying the area’s world-class and diverse producers to strengthen the region’s economy, attract investment and export opportunities, promote regional pride, and create sustainable jobs. It represents local producers, culinary and agri-tourism operators who live and work in what is WA’s premier food bowl, aiming to ultimately establish the Southern Forests as an internationally-recognised agricultural region and culinary tourism destination.

The Southern Forests produces over 50 different types of fruits and vegetables, truffles and boutique produce, dairy, sheep, pork and cattle farms, as well as award-winning wineries and exceptional culinary experiences. The Southern Forests region is heavily invested in agriculture, with $230 million of agricultural production coming from the region.

getFresh merchants: getFresh serve the hospitality industry with a range of fresh and innovative produce sourced from leading farms in Australia and around the world. Their range focuses on local seasonal and sustainable produce. We also offer a wide variety of specialty, heirloom, premium leaf and salad produce, complementing our full range of conventional produce.

getFresh understands the importance of freshness and the innovative demands of contemporary cuisine. We adopt a fresh approach to produce supply – constantly liaising with farms, growers and clients to ensure we remain at the cutting edge of tastes and trends.

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