ORGANIC beef supply chain, OBE Organic plans to host dedicated Grazing Best Management Practices forums every six months after a resounding response from producers at the company’s first such forum held in Roma last week.
More than 70 beef producers and industry stakeholders attended the event, where they were introduced to the Grazing BMP program.
The event was the biggest single session facilitated by Grazing BMP, and gave the program by far its biggest uptake on social media with Tweeters from across Australia and internationally using the hashtag #grazingBMP.
Many attendees joined twitter for the first time at the forum and were eager to start sharing their outback stories with the world through social media.
OBE Organic general manager Dalene Wray said the program would now help OBE’s drive to find new high-quality organic beef producers to supply certified cattle.
“Producers now know if they are at, below or above industry standards on a range of successful beef enterprise drivers, and they can use that knowledge to improve profitability by combining organic beef premiums with tailored best practice management skills,” Ms Wray said.
“This industry-owned tool offers many long-term opportunities to individual producers and to OBE Organic, and we are very excited about the potential for Grazing BMP to help us take organic beef production to the next level.
“OBE needs more cattle to meet booming demand for organic beef, but we want to find the best producers to form long-term partnerships. Grazing BMP is entirely voluntary, but it will appeal to good producers who want to be better, and that’s who we want to be working with,” Ms Wray said.
“Some producers think OBE Organic only accepts cattle from shareholders or from graziers situated in the Channel Country, so the Roma forum was also invaluable to get the message out that we want cattle from beef producers wherever they are – as long as they are serious organic beef producers,” she said.
Earlier this year OBE became Grazing BMP’s first corporate partner as part of its commitment to continually improve organic producers’ profitability and sustainability.
Grazing BMP is a government and industry-funded voluntary self-assessment and planning tool for the beef industry.
It benchmarks current practices against an industry-developed set of standards, compares performance between peers, and creates tailored action plans for improvement in areas that are below industry average.
Standards are created by leading graziers using best available science and then reviewed annually by a collection of leading graziers from across the state.
Producers at the Roma forum were introduced to the program and self-assessed themselves against two of the five Grazing BMP modules – business management and animal welfare.
Individual data is kept private, but collated data from the workshop identified organic producers as being generally above their peers in animal welfare, and highlighted some business management aspects that can be improved.
Producers can now work at their own pace on implementing their individual action plans. OBE will deliver Grazing BMP forums every six months to review learnings, potentially provide training in identified areas of need, and self-assess other areas against industry best practice.
- Organic producers who didn’t attend the Roma forum can join the OBE Organic Grazing BMP program at any time by visiting the Grazing BMP website, accessible here.
- More information on OBE Organic Grazing BMP is available by contacting OBE Organic Livestock Coordinator Ross Mackenzie on 0409 960 084 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Source: OBE Organic