Animal Welfare and Environment Hot Topics in Beef Future

Animal Welfare and Environment Hot Topics in Beef Future

February 09 2017

Animal welfare, animal nutrition and the environment are hot topics of discussion in the development of the Australian Beef Sustainability Framework (ABSF), the Red Meat Advisory Council (RMAC) said today.

During the first month of consultation of the Australian Beef Sustainability Framework (ABSF) more than 1,000 people have visited the online consultation forum and over 120 submissions were received.

Four out of every five people commenting on the draft Australian Beef Sustainability Framework are from industry.

With just over a week until the framework consultation closes on 17 February, Prue Bondfield, Chair of the Sustainability Steering Group (SSG), encouraged everyone in industry to take the opportunity to have a say.

“The framework is being developed through consultation and it’s really important that if you are involved in industry in any way that you visit and provide your feedback,” Mrs Bondfield said.

“We’ve had a high amount of engagement so far; and would welcome more moving forward.”

Preliminary insights from ABSF consultation have shown that:

  • 100 per cent of respondents agree the four themes of animal welfare, economic resilience, environmental stewardship, and people and the community are relevant
  • The priority areas and indicators for animal welfare and environmental stewardship have had the most comments and suggestions for changes
  • There is support for indicators for animal nutrition, pasture management and discussion about how carbon sequestration can reduce emissions on-farm
  • There is a need for clearer indicators around animal welfare – with a focus around how to properly handle cattle, and minimising stock stress
  • 55pc of all feedback has come from beef producers and 26 pc of feedback has come from those working in support industries of the beef industry

“The SSG is meeting later this month to review all of the feedback we have received and from there will develop the first Australian Beef Sustainability Framework baseline report,” Mrs Bondfield said.

Consultation will close on 17 February. The ABSF is a project managed by RMAC; with an inaugural report of consultation findings to be published in March.