22/08/2014 - 12:32

Beef Futures to benefit state’s north

22/08/2014 - 12:32

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The state government has today unveiled the Northern Beef Futures project, a $15 million investment in supply chain and trade development that it says will have a flow on benefit of half a billion dollars across the community.

Beef Futures to benefit state’s north
The region's 118 cattle farming businesses will benefit according to the government.

The state government has today unveiled the Northern Beef Futures project, a $15 million investment in supply chain and trade development it says will have a flow-on benefit of $500 million across the community.

The spending will be funded through Royalties for Regions, as part of the government’s Seizing the Opportunity initiative.

Agriculture and Food Minister Ken Baston said it was an exciting time for agriculture and food in Western Australia and the investment would support the cattle industry to grow.

“A key strategy will be to encourage market expansion and diversification, to strengthen the beef supply chain so it can withstand risks such as market interruptions,’’ he said.

“Northern Beef Futures will invest from the ‘ground up’ in the development of the supply chain to assist the industry to meet the specifications and requirements of potential customers in key Chinese and South-East Asian markets.  

“This will include improving cattle breeding techniques and genetics, and changes to herd management practices.”

The government said there were 89 pastoral leases across the Kimberley and Pilbara, with more than 100 businesses.

Two thirds of those businesses were family-run, while a further fifth were indigenous owned or managed.

The management improvements identified would potentially deliver production increases of 40 to 50 per cent, creating an extra $127 million in value over the life of the investment, the government said.

The project will also involve construction of a beef technology demonstration hub in Broome, the first of a number across northern WA.

Regional Development Minister Terry Redman said the project would promote exports.

“Northern Beef Futures will establish the diversity of supply chains needed for the industry to grow,’’ he said.

“It will also provide the Kimberley and Pilbara beef industries with coordinated supply chains and enhanced production methods needed to supply new and growing markets.

“Industry involvement, visibility, support and leadership will be the key to the success of the Northern Beef Futures project and industry.”

The project follows a number of recent moves in the agriculture industry to promote exports to Asia, including the billion dollar deal signed by V & V Walsh earlier this year.

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