The UK’s position as a global leader in meat-based innovation has opened up employment opportunities in Australia.

Australian meat producer BE Campbell is targeting the UK meat sector in its hunt for a general manager of innovation, Paul Mulcock, MD of Yorkshire-based specialist search company Broad Oak Solutions, has revealed.

BE Campbell believed the UK meat sector was “at the vanguard of innovation in terms of value-added multi-species meat products” and led the world for talent, he said.

The company, which supplies meat to the Woolworths supermarket chain and some 900 restaurants in Sydney, did not believe Australia was the place to find “the critical person” it required to increase market share in the Asia Pacific region and drive a new product innovation strategy, he added.

“Australia is keen to catch up and use UK talent to make the necessary progress occur,” said Mulcock. “Our innovation professionals are globally respected, and lead the global agenda in developing value-added products. Major multiples in the UK have created this uplift in innovation and in the value-added agenda, as a consequence of consumer demand and the need to provide consumers with exciting choice.”

The Australian market had not historically had the same appetite for such products, he added, while its food industry did not possess the “inherent mature skills base for NPD”.

“This development in Australia could signal a trend for UK-based food professionals operating below the traditionally targeted levels to be both sought after and offered dramatic career progression,” he said.

“I think we’ll see an export of talent from the UK as this market develops; the immigration process is not as complex as people believe.”