Supply chain assurance grants now open for exporters
Australian businesses involved in the live animal export trade are being reminded to apply for Government grants to support improved welfare standards in their supply chains. The Australian Government has provided $5 million through the Approved Supply Chain Improvements Program, to encourage industry investment in supply chains in live animal export markets. Funding is available on a 1:3 investment ratio with the Government contributing $1 for every $3 of industry investment. It can be used to fund eligible infrastructure upgrades and training and to help Australian exporters develop exporter supply chain systems that meet the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) animal welfare standards. “The Gillard Government actively encourages the use of stunning in the slaughter of livestock, and at least 20 per cent of program funds will be used to expand its use. This funding will help more exporters introduce stunning to their supply chains,” agriculture minister Joe Ludwig said. Applications will remain open until 30 April 2013 or until funds are fully allocated. Further information is available by clicking here
Landholder input urged for National Wildlife Corridors Plan
The Federal Government has released the Draft National Wildlife Corridors Plan Farmers, which will establish a national network of wildlife corridors across Australia. The National Farmers Federation is urging farmers and rural landholders to contribute to the consultation phase of the debate, and to explain the important role farmers play as environmental stewards of the landscape. NFF president Jock Laurie said it was imperative that the plan does not result in more red tape or regulation for farms, that land title will not be changed as a result of a wildlife corridor declaration, and that farmers will not be forced into any conservation action under the proposed Plan, meaning that all actions undertaken by farmers are voluntary. The plan includes an opportunity for farmers and private landholders to receive funding for ecosystem and biodiversity management. The consultation phase is open until April 20. For more information contact the Department for Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities on 1800 803 772. To lodge a public comment click here
EU info day for NSW producers
An information day at Forbes on Thursday, March 22, will look at developments in the European Union (EU) beef market and what is required for producers to supply the market. The event is being run by the NSW Department of Primary Industries and Meat and Livestock Australia. NSW DPI Livestock Officer at Forbes, Jeff House, said premiums on offer for EU eligible cattle had renewed producer interest in obtaining EU accreditation. Mr House said that with JBS Australia recently accrediting its feedlot and processing plant at Riverina Beef at Narrandera, demand for EU cattle was continually increasing. In addition to Mr House, speakers include JBS Australia Feedlots Assistant Manager Jim Guilfoyle, NSW DPI Livestock Officer Kate Parry and Ausmeat auditor Trish Ryder. The event will run from 10am-2:30pm (registration from 9:30am) at the Forbes Services Memorial Club, Templar Street, Forbes.The cost is $20 per head, which includes lunch. Contact Annette Lindgren on (02) 6947 4188 or email@example.com.
Take stock ahead of first muster
Help is at hand for northern graziers to determine the best stocking rates for their properties before the completion of the year´s first round muster. Charters Towers-based beef extension officers from the Department of Employment, Economic Development and Innovation (DEEDI) are inviting graziers to attend the first in a series of Stocktake workshops on March 22 at The Brook, via the Lynd Highway. The workshops will guide graziers on calculating sustainable stocking rates of their paddocks based on available pasture, and offer advice on establishing rangeland monitoring sites to understand changes in land condition. Principal extension officer Bob Shepherd said the first round muster was usually the best time for graziers to adjust cattle numbers. "Even if we receive rain in winter, there’s a good chance there won’t be any growth in the pasture for another eight months, so the workshops are really about assisting producers to budget for future cattle feed needs, based on how much feed is around," Mr Shepherd said. "Sensible stocking rates maximise the chance of cattle doing well, while making sure there´s good ground cover at the end of the dry season.” Further workshops will be held at the following locations: 26 March – Sayah Park (south of Charters Towers); 27 March – Spyglass (on the Lynd Hwy), 28 March – Ellimeek (Pentland), 20 April – Ravenswood (Ravenswood Hall). Bookings for the workshop can be made by calling DEEDI on 4761 5150 or for further information click here
'Leuc' no further for leucaena tips
Cattle producers across southern and Central Queensland will be offered tips on how to grow and manage leucaena during an upcoming field day at Wandoan this Saturday, March 17. Guest speaker and senior pasture agronomist with Department of Employment, Economic Development and Innovation (DEEDI) Stuart Buck said the field day was being driven by significant interest in growing leucaena, especially across Southern Queensland. "Interest in growing leucaena in cooler climatic regions is continuing to gain momentum, as producers are looking to diversify their forage crops or replace crops that are unreliable and unprofitable," Mr Buck said. "The purpose of the field day is to provide graziers with the best available information on growing and managing leucaena.” The day will include paddock walk to inspect established leucaena and the results of recent fertiliser trials incorporating phosphorus and sulphur. "Well-managed pastures of leucaena and grass have the potential to double beef production to greater than 125 kg/ha per year, which will deliver a significant boost to the industry,” Mr Buck said. The field day will be held from 9 am – 12.30pm at Laurie Peak’s 'Cherwondah' property, 844 Peakes Road, Wandoan. RSVP to Laurie Peake on 4627 4157 by tomorrow, March 14.