Cat­tle ex­port study praises Kim­ber­ley, Pil­bara op­er­a­tions

Countryman - - LIVESTOCK - Zach Relph

WA has emerged as a pil­lar of Aus­tralia’s $1.2 bil­lion live cat­tle ex­port trade, ac­count­ing for onequar­ter of the coun­try’s pro­duce shipped to in­ter­na­tional mar­kets.

A new Me­cardo-led live cat­tle ex­port study, re­leased last Fri­day, found that about $620 mil­lion was re­turned to cat­tle farm­ers an­nu­ally from 2012-2017 on the back of grow­ing beef de­mand.

The strong rev­enues en­joyed by cat­tle pro­duc­ers came as about 265,000 head ex­ited through WA’s ports ev­ery year dur­ing the same time frame, equat­ing to 25 per cent of Aus­tralia’s live cat­tle in­dus­try.

With Fed­eral La­bor threat­en­ing to phase out live sheep ex­ports within five years if elected, Kim­ber­ley Pil­bara Cat­tle­men’s As­so­ci­a­tion chief ex­ec­u­tive Emma White said the re­port was timely if Bill Shorten turned his at­ten­tion to cat­tle ex­ports. “The re­port has come at a re­ally im­por­tant time,” she said.

“We’ve used find­ings from the re­port to com­ment to the ASEL re­view. It em­pha­sises that for the north of Aus­tralia — par­tic­u­larly Pil­bara, Kim­ber­ley and North­ern Ter­ri­tory — the fun­da­men­tal im­por­tance of live cat­tle ex­ports.”

The anal­y­sis, com­mis­sioned by LiveCorp and Meat and Live­stock Aus­tralia, found the Kim­ber­ley and Pil­bara hosted the bulk of WA’s herd. The Kim­ber­ley holds about 35 per cent, while 29 per cent is based in the Pil­bara.

About 71 per cent of Kim­ber­ley cat­tle sales are iden­ti­fied as live ex­port trans­ac­tions, com­pared with the Pil­bara’s 60 per cent.

The doc­u­ment also showed NT had the greatest stake in Aus­tralia’s live cat­tle ex­ports, ship­ping 400,000 head — or 38 per cent of the coun­try’s mar­ket — an­nu­ally.

Pic­ture: KPCA

Emma White, ex­porter Justin Morrissey and Cat­tle Coun­cil of Aus­tralia CEO Margo An­drae.

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