Cattle supplies increase across the country
Total national cattle supply has risen by 12pc this week, with all states experiencing bigger yardings compared to last week, according to Meat & Livestock Australia’s National Livestock Reporting Service. With some rainfall across supply areas throughout Queensland, the official market reporting service said increased restocker and feeder buying interest was evident at the Roma and Toowoomba sales earlier this week, where quality remained quite plain and yardings contained a large proportion of lightweight lines suited to restockers. Supplies across NSW saw some plainer lines suited to feeders at Forbes, while Wagga saw well-bred secondary yearling steers and heifers attract good northern feedlot competition, with southern domestic meat buyers keen to secure heavy grown steers. Victoria experienced good demand for trade cattle at Pakenham, with secondary lines meeting strong support from restockers. At the close of Tuesday’s markets the Eastern Young Cattle Indicator (EYCI) reduced 4.5¢ week-on-week, to average 321.25¢/kg cwt. Trade steers eased 2¢ on 179¢, while medium steers were 3¢ lower on 175¢/kg. Feeder steer dropped 4¢ on 179¢, while heavy steers were 2¢ cheaper, to average 184¢/kg. The medium cow indicator increased 2¢ on 133¢/kg.
Katter calls for Karumba upgrade
North Queensland MP Bob Katter has urged the Federal Government to reallocate a portion of the $60 million allocated by the former Rudd Government to building Indonesia’s cattle industry into upgrading capacity of the Karumba port take larger vessels. “Currently the centre of gravity in the beef industry is the gulf,” he said. “The idea of sending the cattle east-south-east – in the opposite direction to Indonesia, (which) means an extra three days in a boat and an extra $100 in a truck – is completely ludicrous.” Mr Katter said he met with Julie Bishop yesterday ahead of her meeting in Jakarta today with Indonesian counterpart Marty Natalegawa, and urged her to tread carefully on the issue of live cattle exports, saying that the precarious nature of the relationship could put the recovery of Australia’s important beef and cattle trade with Indonesia in jeopardy. He said the Katter Australia Party was also tenaciously opposed to any sale of Australian land to foreign interests. “We feel there are ways around this with agistment, particularly, with our First Australians in Northern Australia, who are getting no money from their land. We want First Australians to work the properties themselves. If we can develop areas currently empty of cattle then the Karumba Port upgrade becomes an absolute necessity.”
NFF welcomes further Farm Finance roll-out
The National Farmers’ Federation (NFF) says it has welcome the ‘long-awaited news’ that farmers in South Australia, Western Australia and the Northern Territory will soon be able to access concessional loans under the Farm Finance package. “It has been an extremely long road for farmers in trying to gain access to the funding promised under the Farm Finance package,” NFF CEO Matt Linnegar said.“Although Queensland, NSW and Victoria signed up to the deal some months ago, many farmers in these states are still waiting to access the concessional loans. Tasmania is the only state not yet to have signed up to the package. “We believe the focus now must be ensuring that Tasmania also signs, and ensuring that the concessional loans are made available to farmers as soon as possible,” Mr Linnegar said.
10 scholarships to Qld ag colleges awarded
Ten young people aspiring to a career in agriculture have been awarded scholarships to the Emerald Agricultural College and Longreach Pastoral College. Queensland minister for agriculture John McVeigh said the students would be supported by the Newman Government’s scholarship program as they strive for a career in agricultural and rural industries. Each will receive $10,000 towards tuition and board at the colleges. The following scholarship recipients will undertake study modules in equine studies, rural studies, and sheep and wool at Longreach Pastoral College: Blake Coomber, (Nambour, Queensland); Bonnie Kenner, (Bagdad, Tasmania); Charleigh Robinson, (Goondiwindi, Queensland); Darren Close (Hampton, Queensland) and Ebui Winston Williams (Bamaga, Queensland). The following students will undertake study at Emerald Agricultural College in beef production, rural operations and agribusiness management courses: Alexandra Forrest (Nebo, Queensland); James West (Injune, Queensland); Johanna Robertson (Clermont, Queensland); Stevie Ashley-Cooper (Alligator Creek, Queensland) and Will Lambell (Gulargambone, New South Wales). 50 aspiring rural students applied for the scholarship program.
2013 Ralph Hood award winner announced
Dr Simon Firestone, a lecturer in Veterinary Epidemiology and Public Health at the University of Melbourne, has been named as the winner of the 2013 Ralph Hood Award. The award acknowledges someone with leadership potential and a strong commitment in their organisation or field to improve animal health in Australia. With a cash prize of $15,000 to go towards continuing education, personal development or a discrete project with a refined outcome; the award aims to facilitate a career enhancement opportunity for the winner as well as adding value to the national animal health system. Dr Firestone is coordinating the new Master of Veterinary Public Health (Emergency Animal Diseases) program, which will be producing its first graduates in 2015. In addition, he is also developing a productive research program focused on epidemiology and veterinary public health including avian influenza planning and preparedness, an evaluation of Australia’s national system of zoonosis surveillance and epidemiological analyses and reporting on human notifiable disease surveillance.
The Ralph Hood Award was established in 2011 to honour the memory of Mr Ralph Hood, chief executive officer of AHA from 2003 to 2007.
Applicants sought for Simon Gubbins Scholarship
The Australian Beef Industry Foundation (ABIF) is seeking applicants for the Simon Gubbins Scholarship, which provides Australian students with an opportunity an opportunity for an Australian student to study a Degree or Diploma of Agriculture course at the prestigious Lincoln University in New Zealand. The Gubbins family, Old Murroa Partnership, Hamilton, Victoria are once again proud to be sponsoring the scholarship. Named after the late Simon Gubbins, Jenny and John Gubbins said, “We feel this is something Simon would be very happy with”. “It is entirely appropriate that this scholarship, aimed at producing industry leaders, should be named after such an outstanding agricultural leader as Simon Gubbins,”ABIF director Frank Archer said. “Simon, who died in 2003, became a preeminent industry leader and was an exceptional custodian of the land where he developed his property Old Murroa in Western Victoria into a model agricultural enterprise.” Simon Gubbins studied agriculture at Lincoln College (now Lincoln University) in New Zealand, was awarded a Nuffield Scholarship in 1997 and went on to serve on the selection panel for that scholarship. In addition he was a District Councillor of the Victorian Farmers Federation, President of the Grasslands Society of Victoria, President of the Hamilton Branch of the Beef Improvement Association, a director of the Australian Beef Association, Chairman of Rural Industries Skills Training and a member of the Melbourne University Faculty of Agriculture advisory. “Simon was a very strong supporter of ABIF and its aims of inspiring beef industry careers, and was one of the first seedstock breeders in Australia to donate the proceeds from the sale of a bull at his annual sale to ABIF” Mr Archer said. The Simon Gubbins Scholarship will be awarded by a selection panel to be chaired by a representative of the Gubbins family and applications for the 2014 Simon Gubbins Scholar are now open. For details click here.
WA cuts red tape on land clearing
WA environment minister Albert Jacob says changes to legislation surrounding the clearing of native vegetation which took effect yesterday will reduce the administrative burden for farmers and land managers. Under the changes, farmers and land managers will be able to increase the amount of clearing for what is known as limited clearing exemptions from one hectare to five hectares, per financial year. Mr Jacob said the change reflects contemporary farming practices and the need for the removal of vegetation to accommodate larger machinery. For example, existing vehicle tracks may need to be widened to allow for a larger combine harvester. The other change will give farmers and land managers 20 years to maintain land previously cleared lawfully, without applying for a clearing permit. This is an increase from the current 10-year time frame.
“These changes are designed to make life easier for farmers and land managers, without resulting in any significant risk to the environment. They are intended to reduce regulatory burdens that prohibit future growth and success for land owners and managers, and help farmers get on with managing their land,” Mr Jacob said.
NSW Farmers workshops on CSG and mining
NSW Farmers will hold workshops for landholders on mining and coal seam gas, including land access arrangements and landholder rights, at Lismore, Grafton, Casino and Kyogle next week.“With minerals, coal and coal seam gas applications or titles now covering the majority of NSW, farmers are increasingly facing competition for use of their land from mining and petroleum companies,” NSW Farmers CEO Matt Brand said. Workshops will provide information on mining and coal seam gas activity in each area; the NSW Government’s Strategic Regional Land Use Policy package and how that applies to mining and coal seam gas proposals, and?landholder rights and land access arrangements with exploration companies. Workshops will be held at Lismore – 7pm to 9:30pm, Tuesday, 10 December – Lismore Workers Club, 231 Keen Street; Grafton – 7pm to 9:30pm, Wednesday, 11 December – South Grafton Services Club, 2 Wharf Street; Casino – 6:30pm to 9pm, Thursday, 12 December – Casino Community & Cultural Centre, 35 Walker Street. Kyogle – 10am to 12:30pm, Friday, 13 December – Grove House, 8 Geneva Street. The workshops are free for both NSW Farmers members and non-members and will be held as part of the NSW Farmers Mining and Coal Seam Gas Communications Project which is funded by the NSW Government.