The recent launch, the first of its kind in Victoria, of branded beef that has the backing of the grading scheme Meat Standards Australia has proved a success for Kerr Griffen, manager of Castricum Foodservice.

It took over 18 months and A$15,000 to source the product and develop its launch and trade incentives, but now Griffen says: "we have created a point-of-difference for our beef. [It is all] grass-fed, sourced from Victorian producers, free of hormone growth promotants and available 12 months of the year."

Producers can also benefit from higher returns on their beef. "We are paying A$2.80 a kilogram for MSA graded beef, and A$2.70 for cattle not making the grade - it is certainly a worthwhile investment," explained Griffen.