NTCA boss has a crack
WITH less than a fortnight before key beef industry leaders meet in Fremantle for the MLA and Cattle Council of Australia AGMs, Northern Territory Cattlemen's Association executive director Luke Bowen has had a crack at the beef industry for being too timid in its discussions over planned restructures. Luke says the industry is well overdue for a massive overhaul, given the last big rethink on the issue happened 14 years ago when the world was a very different place.
Bloody business back
THE live export industry is again holding its breath in anticipation of what ABC Television might produce when Four Corners goes to air next Monday night. The focus of the program is expected to zero in on the latest controversy in Pakistan involving sheep out of WA, but with ABC journalist Sarah Ferguson again on the case all livestock segments are on red alert. It was Ms Ferguson who effectively teamed up with Animals Australia last year to concoct the now infamous 'Bloody Business' program, whipping up community outrage and leading to the devastating temporary halt of live cattle exports to Indonesia.
VICTORIAN beef producer Jim McDonald is waging a Facebook war against Coles, saying the retail giant isn't coming clean on its decision to force new animal welfare compliance orders on its Australian pork suppliers, while standards from its overseas suppliers remain hazy. Remember, Coles announced this the same day Animals Australia launched a television campaign attacking Australian pork producers. Jim is on a mission to find out how Coles audits and tracks their overseas supply chains, but so far Coles has dodged the question and have now hidden it completely by removing it from their Facebook page. Undeterred, Jim is now blogging furiously and lambasting the retailer for throwing "Australian farmers under a bus".
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US expert on song
US analyst Dave Nelson, Rabobank's Chicago based global strategist for Animal Proteins and Grains & Oilseeds tells me ahead of his visit to Australia next week that conditions are positive for Australian producers on the back of the liquidation of the US herd and the lack of overall growth in beef production globally.
Beef's new strong man
ALSO racking up those frequent flyer miles of late is the former MLA EU regional manager Jason Strong who has pulled up stumps in Brussels with his young family and moved back to Brisbane to start as AACo's new general manager of marketing effective today (November 1). This is a bold move by AACo as it looks to sharpen the pointy end of its vertically integrated beef business as both the country's biggest cattle producer and global marketer of its own beef brands. The company is also shifting ground south of Darwin in a bid to build its ambitious northern abattoir. Jason was recently on the Gold Coast at BeefEx.
Super Butcher reigns
CATTLE king turned super butcher Zanda McDonald is in Brisbane next Thursday to speak at the Rural Press Club about how his newly acquired Super Butcher retail chain in South East Queensland, which he rescued earlier this year from certain death under a pile of debt and angry creditors, will prosper under his leadership.
India on the rise
INDIA will be the world's biggest exporter of beef in 2013. Export forecasts released by the USDA Foreign Agricultural Service points to Indian beef exports reaching 2.16 million tonnes next year, up from a world leading 1.68 million tonnes in 2012 - with the next closest nation in 2013, Brazil, shipping 1.45 million tonnes. Compared to the 29 per cent year-on-year rise forecast in Indian beef exports in 2013, Brazilian and Australian (1.41 million tonnes) beef exports are only expected to increase 4pc and 2pc, respectively. Indian beef now accounts for nearly a quarter of the world beef trade, compared to just 8pc in 2009, although it does not have access to our major markets like Japan, the US and Korea. Got a meaty story to pass on? Direct message me through Twitter