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With fitting tribute to World Environment Day

Melbourne Convention Centre officially opened

The Melbourne Convention Centre was officially opened on World Environment Day with a fitting tribute – a sustainable menu. Victorian Premier John Brumby opened the state-of-the-art venue at an official lunch for dignitaries and the business community on June 5. Opening for business on the 22 June, there are already 50 major international conventions and a predicted 190 national events booked to be held at the centre. The venue’s leading environmental design features are a key factor in it generating so much interest.

It is the first convention centre in the world with a ‘6 star green star’ environmental rating, which reflects its innovational environmental design features, including (among other design features) a displacement ventilation system; the first privately funded black water treatment plant in a public building in Australia; and 8500sqm of sustainable harvested timber veneer panelling in the plenary hall, banquet room and foyer area.

Fitting with not only its own leading environmental practices, but World Environment Day, the centre served a menu for the opening using produce sourced from local (Victorian) boutique producers and farmers, who are committed to best environmental practices, with wines served from the finest vineyards in the state.

Guests were treated to Red Hill goats cheese (made from free-range goats milk) with a roasted baby pear, onion jam, brioche and micro cress, followed by char grilled certified Black Angus rump sourced from Gippsland and Yarra Valley salmon which is cured on-site by MCEC’s own chefs.

Food and Wine manager Frank Burger says the venue prides itself on sourcing the freshest ingredients it can from local quality producers and turning them into a five star culinary offering. “We don’t look at the size of the group when we’re preparing a menu, it’s all about what is in season locally, and then sourcing the freshest, best quality product we can whether it’s for 20 or 2000.”

The centre has already won a leading national industry award for its quality food and wine, awarded both the state and national MEA (Meetings & Events Australia) Awards for Banqueting and Catering – beating competitors from the nation’s best venues and leading catering organisations.

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